I am not sure what concerns me more.. this massive fish die-off, or the fact that we put the fish, when they live, in area lakes, knowing they are unhealthy and carry bacteria, parasites and other disease.
Does no one at WDFW know that this is harmful to the entire aquatic ecosystem?
We need to stop putting any non-native species into the ecosystem, even if it means cancelling those fishing derbies. How it is possible we are not having a community discussion on our priorities, or the importance of keeping our ecosystem healthy and resilient as it continues to suffer greater and greater impacts and threats to its equilibrium?
The rule for people should be: put down that ecosystem function and just back out slowly and walk away before more living things get hurt.
More info from Wendy Harris from a separate and related post:
Harm Done to Whatcom Creek Riparian Area Could Prove Deadly To Fish
Did you know that one reason Whatcom Creek was targeted for riparian restoration is that this estuary was listed as impaired for temperature? And that increasing vegetation is not only good for wildlife, it is crucial for reducing temperature in the creek to allow our spawning salmon to survive? Removing riparian vegetation during the hottest summer on record, a summer when hatchery fish at Whatcom Falls Creek have died, is the very worst thing to have done, and may have impacts for fish survival in the estuary. But guess what? We will never know because the city does not have a baseline standard for its fish,wildlife or habitat.
Are you getting the idea yet of why vegetation in the riparian corridor is so important and why establishing quantifiable baseline standards that can be monitored is so important? Good, because now maybe you can explain this to the Mayor and her Natural Resources staff.