Ice cover expected to cause more fish kills - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Ice cover expected to cause more fish kills

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MADISON (WKOW) -- The state Department of Natural Resources says people might notice more dead fish washing ashore in northern Wisconsin this spring.

DNR biologists expect to see die-offs every spring.  Ice and snow blocks sunlight from reaching oxygen-producing aquatic plants which produce the oxygen fish need.  The DNR documented 18 fish kills caused by low oxygen levels last winter.

It's rare for lakes to see a total winterkill.  Fish often seek out tributaries or springs where oxygen levels are higher.  But the DNR says 3 feet of ice still cover many northern lakes and fresh snow that fell last week is making things even darker underwater which can lead to large die-offs.

DNR officials are asking anyone who happens upon a winterkill to contact the agency.

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