Tens Of Thousands Of Fish Dead In Neuse River

Tens of thousands of fish are floating in the Neuse River in Craven County.

The fish kill is near Fisher's Landing in the Flanners Beach area, below New Bern. Travis Graves, the Lower Neuse Riverkeeper, is working to investigate the kill with a doctor at the marine lab in Morehead City.

"Right now I'm not seeing any evidence of an infection in the fish," says Graves. "A couple of the things we watch for are slime mold and pfiesteria."

It appears that very low oxygen in the water is creating the kill, which is made up of menhaden.

"Temperature is partially responsible for it and the excessive amount of rainfall in the last few weeks," explains Graves. "As the fresh water comes down to the basin, it traps the saltwater wedge that the menhaden we see like to congregate in. As that saltwater wedge gets smaller, the oxygen is depleted and then the fish start dying."

People are advised not to pick up or mess with the fish.