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Causes of Fish Kills

Pest, Lawn, and Lake Service in Central Florida

Several fish swimming in a pond - fish stocking by Sorko Services in Central Florida

The ecosystem of a lake or pond is a complex balance of living organisms and their environment. When any one element is thrown off balance, every other part of the ecosystem is affected. Fish, in particular, are significantly damaged by any change to the lake’s oxygen, plant life, and bacteria levels. Fish kills are a strong sign that something isn’t quite right with a body of water, and you should seek to solve the problem as soon as possible. If fish have been dying off in your lake or pond, one or more of the following factors could be the culprit.

  • Low Oxygen Levels

    This is the main cause of widespread fish kills. Though fish live under water, they still need a small level of oxygen to survive. There are several things that can throw oxygen levels out of whack, including temperature, lack of sunlight, and organic waste.

  • Diseases and Parasites

    There are several pathogens dangerous to fish that can enter lake or pond water. Protozoans, bacteria, and viruses can all cause serious health conditions in fish that can easily spread to a whole population.

  • Chemical Runoff

    Fertilizer, chemical waste, and sewage running off into water systems can all be detrimental to fish. Sometimes, these substances can be directly toxic to fish. But, other times they cause fish kills because microbes in the water begin to digest the toxic substance and use up oxygen levels.

  • Algae Blooms

    Similar to chemical runoffs, algae blooms can be directly toxic to fish or deplete the oxygen present in the water. In fact, some chemical runoffs can provide more nutrients in the water, feeding algae and causing blooms. Algae dying too much too fast can quickly exhaust the oxygen content of water, leading to fish kills.

  • Water Temperature Fluctuations

    If the water temperature fluctuates dramatically or remains consistently higher than normal, fish can die. Warm water has generally less oxygen than cold water, so the summer can be especially rough for fish.

Having trouble maintaining a healthy fish population in your lake or pond? At Sorko Services, we have the knowledge to diagnose the condition of your body of water and the tools to remedy the problem. We can not only return your lake to a healthy state, we can also restock it with enough fish to kickstart a thriving population. If you’d like to learn more about any of our services, please give us a call at 407-878-4492.