Fish found belly-up at Lake Victor

Published: Wednesday, June 12, 2013 at 11:17 AM.

“We know there was over 19 inches of rain in the area from January to April, and the lake got its share of rain and runoff,” said Chris Paxton, the FWC’s freshwater fisheries administrator for northwest Florida. He said the FWC was in constant contact with the Florida Department of Health and the Department of Environmental Protection and that FWC staff accompanied investigators from the Department of Agriculture to inspect the lake during the fish kill. There was no visual evidence of chemical pollution, toxic algal blooms or signs of disease among the dead fish.

“This is something all of us, including the residents around the lake and our own fisheries management staff, wish never happened but in time the lake will recover,” Paxton said. Once oxygen levels build back up, the FWC will restock the lake with fingerling sport fish.

Bream and crappie populations can respond within one to two years but it may take three to four years for significant bass populations to rebuild. FWC biologists will monitor the lake and consider all fisheries management tools that may quicken the lake’s recovery.

The good news is there is no evidence of any form of contamination that would prevent the lake from recovering. In addition, reduced competition often allows young sport fish to grow rapidly after kills of this type.

To learn more about fish kills and what you can do to help prevent them, visit Although most summer fish kills relate to natural processes, the FWC requests your support in reporting fish kills to the FWC Fish Kill Hotline at 800-636-0511 or at the above link.

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