06 April 2010

Fish kill at Lake Shetek

MPR's Mark Steil covers the fish kill at Lake Shetek in southwest Minnesota. I'm no expert on fish kills, so I don't know how this one compares to others...but it looks pretty damn bad.

Thousands of dead fish--mostly dead carp weighing up to 20 pounds--float in a bay on Lake Shetek, packed in by the wind. Even fin to fin, they cover an area that is easily the size of a football field. A crew of more than 30 volunteers is picking them up with pitchforks.

"It's not probably the most pleasant work; it's kind of smelly," volunteer organizer Mark Slettum said. "But I think we all believe that we're caretakers of the lake and we certainly want to give back to it by cleaning it up and kind of being the custodians of the lake."

The smell of rotting fish fills the air. One by one, volunteers toss the carcasses into trailers and the buckets of front end loaders. They land with a squishy plop.
Visit MPR for the full story, with audio and a disgusting-but-you-have-to-look slideshow.

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