DNR: Winter Blamed for Hundreds of Dead Fish at Minn. Lake

Updated: 04/15/2014 6:03 AM KSTP.com By: Todd Wilson

Neighbors are complaining of a rotten fish smell after hundreds of fish were found dead at Rice Lake near Maple Grove.

Bob Beck, who lives on Rice Lake, tells KSTP the smell of dead fish started roughly two weeks ago. "Going all the way around the lake there's hundreds and hundreds of dead fish in there, most of them small," he said.

Beck says the birds showed up soon after. "I was wondering if it was going to be so bad we'd have to have somebody come in and do some netting or something. But the birds started coming and started feasting," he said.

Brad Parsons of the Department of Natural Resources says this is common because of the difficult winter we had. "What happens then is that the oxygen in certain shallow lakes gets used up through natural process and if you don't have enough oxygen obviously fish are not going to make it," he said.

Parsons says there are certain fish that are affected more than others. "Like large mouth bass and walleye, then you get into your blue gill and crappies. Things like black bull heads and common carp which are some of things we don't want to see they tend to be more resistant," said Parsons.

Beck says it's an amazing phenomena, "we've been here 20 years and that's the first time I've never seen it that bad."