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Dead fish mystery at La Brea again

Published: 
Thursday, February 4, 2016

Close to 400 pounds of dead fish has once again washed up on the shores at Point Sable and Carat Shed beaches, La Brea, sparking fear among residents that what ever caused their death could also affect them.

The find has propelled president of the La Brea Fisherfolk Association, Alvin La Borde, to once again plead with the Environmental Management Authority (EMA) to come clean with the results of tests conducted in the past and say what was causing the fish kill to continue.

Speaking at Carat Shed beach yesterday, La Borde said following the discovery of carcasses of a bottle-nose dolphin and other marine life on the beach last August, numerous samples were taken but the results were never revealed.

“Basically the same thing is happening again. A lot of different species of fish is washing ashore and it is a cause for serious concern. 

“What is killing the fish could be affecting human beings in some way. We want to know if this fish kill is as a result of some sort of chemical being dumped in the sea because it does not happen throughout the year.”

He said dead fish first started surfacing following the Petrotrin oil spill two years ago but did not believe that was responsible for the present situation. He said there were a lot of companies operating around the Gulf of Paria and toxicity levels in the water must be tested and revealed so it could be corrected. 

 La Borde said since the new wave of fish kill started on Sunday, “I contacted the EMA and they assured me they would be getting in touch with the Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) and come down here to do some testing.”

Representatives were yet to arrive, he said. A trustee with the fishing association, Wayne Henry, questioned what sense it made to test samples when the results remained hidden.

“Fishermen from Otaheite, Claxton Bay, do night fishing on these beaches. When they throw their nets into the sea chances are some of the sick fish could get caught up in the nets and they could sell these to unsuspecting customers who could die and nobody will know what killed them because some of the half dead ones look good. Fishermen want a proper investigation into what is causing this fish kill,” Henry said.

La Borde expressed disappointment with the response of the elected representatives for La Brea, including the local government councillor and MP Nicole Olivierre. He said the association had been trying to arrange a meeting with Olivierre, who is also the Energy Minister, since last year with no success.

“We have asked for several meetings with Miss Olivierre and the last response we got from her secretary is that the earliest available date is the ending of February,” La Borde said.