Pollutant likely cause of Portage River fish kill

HARRIS TOWNSHIP, OH (Toledo News Now) - The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has completed its investigation into a massive fish kill in the Portage River that spanned three counties.

Although no official cause was determined, ODNR investigators suspect it may have been caused by a possible pollutant.

The fish were first reported dead last week floating in the Portage River.  The Ohio Department of Natural Resources said more than 2,000 dead fish were discovered in a 15 mile stretch of the river, starting south of Pemberville and reaching the 590 bridge between Elmore and Oak Harbor.

The majority of the fish were suckers.  Officers also found dead carp, catfish, bass and pike.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency also investigated the fish kill.  Investigators were unable to locate a source of pollution.  ODNR officers said because of recent rains, a pollutant could have washed away.

The kill is estimated to have cost more than $8,000, based on the type and size of fish that found dead.

ODNR officers said if they are able to find a source of pollution, charges could be filed.

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