Professional fishermen give hope: Fish stocks in the Oder are recovering

Tons of dead fish have been recovered from the Oder since the beginning of August.

Professional fishermen give hope: Fish stocks in the Oder are recovering

Tons of dead fish have been recovered from the Oder since the beginning of August. The stock is doing surprisingly well, according to the Brandenburg-Berlin State Fishing Association. Apparently the algae toxin did not reach all animals. However, it could be years before the damage in the river heals.

After the mass death of fish in the Oder, the stock is recovering rapidly, according to commercial fishermen. The result of two studies in the Oder is that the fish are doing surprisingly well, said Lars Dettmann, Managing Director of the Brandenburg-Berlin State Fishing Association.

Together with the Leibniz Institute for Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB), he was on a stretch of river near Brieskow-Finkenheerd near Frankfurt (Oder) to observe the fish population during a second sampling. "The Oder is recovering noticeably. You can see living mussels and snails and fish that are vital."

Since the beginning of August, tons of dead fish have been recovered from the German-Polish border river. Federal Environment Minister Steffi Lemke announced on Monday that several hundred chemical substances could be responsible for the environmental disaster. The exact cause of the environmental disaster is still unclear. Experts assume that high salinity in the river is a major reason, combined with low water, high temperatures and a toxic species of algae.

According to Dettmann, a first investigation 11 days ago found 14 species among 550 healthy fish, including perch, small zander, pike and wolffish. The latter is a very sensitive fish species. A second sampling this Tuesday also gave a preliminary positive picture. More healthy fish species have been added, a final evaluation will follow, according to Dettmann. Apparently the algae toxin did not reach everyone.

In the meantime, the water of the Oder has risen by about a meter, according to the managing director of the state fishing association. "The Oder is recovering, but it will take years for what broke to heal," estimated Dettmann.

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