About 200 dead fish – almost all of them carp – have been collected from Echo Park Lake this week as one possible reason for the die-off has emerged: herpes. Echo Park Lake gardener and care taker David Foster, who noticed the die-off over the weekend, said an official from the state’s Department of Fish & Game visited the lake this morning to take a look at the dead fish. The state official suspected that the fish might be suffering from a carp or koi herpes similar to one spreading through the Colorado River but he was not sure, according to Foster. The state official did not take any of the dead fish or conduct tests.
A story posted on Arizona’s Game & Fish website said the Koi Herpes Virus is most active when water temperatures rise, especially above 71 degrees. The virus is “not a threat to public health” but the Arizona agency advised anglers to avoid “taking carp and focus on other species during an active outbreak.”
The exact reason for all the dead carp at Echo Park Lake, however, remains a mystery. The Eastsider has contacted the city’s Recreation and Parks Department as well as the California Fish & Game department for more details.
Foster has begun his mornings this week by picking out dead carp – and a handful of game fish – from the lake and answering questions from park visitors. This morning, about 20 dead fish were seen floating in the water. “We just need to know what’s going on,” Foster said.
Echo Park anglers await the first truck load of trout. The Eastsider