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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries
​​DPIRD collects fish and water samples for laboratory testing
Wednesday 30 November 2022

Investigation underway into another fish kill at Port Geographe Marina, Busselton

Investigations have begun into a further fish kill in the Port Geographe Marina near Busselton.

Three to four hundred dead fish of various species have been observed dead in a canal on the western side of the marina, the same location where a fish kill was reported on 12 November.

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) officers, with logistical assistance from the Department of Water and Environment Regulation (DWER), are gathering information and assessing the extent of the fish kill. They will also collect suitable samples for laboratory testing if possible.

Updates will be issued when further information is available. In the meantime, people are reminded to stay safe around fish kills. We urge people to follow the general Department of Health advice:
  • not to swim in areas of water with large numbers of dead and decomposing fish because they may contain high levels of bacteria and have an objectionable odour;
  • not to fish in water with large numbers of dead fish;
  • temporarily not to collect or consume fish from the waters near a fish kill;
  • not to collect and use dead fish for bait or consumption because of the risk of high levels of bacteria; and
  • not to allow pets and other animals to come into contact with dead or decomposing fish either in the water or on shore.​
 The site of the new fish kill on 30 November

Our officers have been trained to collect fish and water samples using appropriate safety methods and equipment. The best way the public can help is by reporting fish kills to the FishWatch 24/7 reporting service on 1800 815 507. Tell us where and what you saw, including numbers of dead fish and, if possible, the species affected. And, if you have GPS coordinates and/or photographs, that will also assist DPIRD’s investigation.

DPIRD is responsible for responding to fish kill events that occur in ocean environments. DWER manages investigations on fish kills that occur in estuaries, rivers and naturally occurring inland water bodies. The Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions manages investigations of fish kills that occur in the Swan Canning Riverpark.

In all circumstances, DPIRD’s laboratories carry out testing of any suitable fish samples and this can take some time.     

Fish kills in open ocean areas may provide less evidence of a direct cause and we explore all possible explanations. It may not be possible to identify a single definitive cause, but every effort is made to establish probable factors. More fish kill​ information can be found on DPIRD’s website.

Last modified: 21/12/2022 1:09 PM

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