Winter fish kill found at Pymatuning Lake - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Winter fish kill found at Pymatuning Lake

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LINESVILLE, Pa. -

People who live around Pymatuning Lake discovered a fish kill over the last couple of days.

The Spillway located near Linesville, PA is known as the place where the ducks walk on the fish but today that took on a much different meaning.
Thousands of dead fish could be found on the shores and alcoves of Pymatuning Lake.

But according to the Pennsylvania Fish Commission, there is no need for alarm.

Freeman Johns, with the commission, said it's a natural phenomenon and not due to a disease or virus.

"The majority of the fish are gizzard shad. It's quite normal for them to die off like this in a normal winter where we have good ice cover. They are very sensitive to sudden temperature drops. We haven't had a fish kill like this in a couple years so it's going to look more dramatic this year," said Johns.

Shad are small foraging fish that are basically food for larger fish like walleye and muskie.

There was also a fish kill on the lake last September. 

"Last summer we had a lot of carp die in the lake, it made the news a lot. It was associated with the coy herpes virus. That only affected the carp. It was pretty dramatic, killed a lot of carp. You'll see a lot less of them at the spillway this year," Johns said.

So no connection there. But winter kills like this are common and do not pose a hazard to the other fish, nor do they pose a hazard to anyone who may want to consume any fish from the lake. 

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