Carp on the Shoreline

Carp Washing up on the Shoreline of Lake Winnipeg

Wildlife and Fisheries Branch are investigating possible causes for the carp die off. To date, it does not appear the die off is due to environmental factors (e.g. low dissolved oxygen) or a biological event (e.g. post spawn stress). Tissue sample collection was completed Friday June 5th. These samples are being analyzed for the presence of two viruses to which Common Carp are susceptible – Koi Herpesvirus (known to occur in MB) and Spring Viraemia of Carp (would be a new detection). It will take a couple of weeks for the tissue analysis to be complete.

It is important for everyone to know that neither of the viruses (if present) pose a human health risk.

Anyone wishing to remove the dead fish from beaches fronting their property can do so using gloves and tools such as rakes or shovels. Dead fish can be:

·       buried above the high water mark at a depth of 1.5 feet

·       composted with vegetation at a suitable location, or

·       delivered to a local landfill or transfer station (within the RM of St. Clements, if fish are brought to the landfill or transfer stations the fish must be bagged and please show your waste barcode identification. If taking fish directly to the landfill/transfer station please let the person at the window know you are bringing in dead fish)

All equipment used should be cleaned afterwards with a mild bleach solution. While these viruses (if present) cannot be transferred to humans, wearing gloves and cleaning equipment afterwards is good hygiene practice as there are bacteria and other organisms present that facilitate the decomposition process.

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