A “fish kill” this week at Gillham Pond was a natural — and healthy — occurrence at the city’s only permanent body of water.
Residents reported hundreds of dead fish floating on the duck pond’s surface Sunday and Monday.
“It’s a good thing actually,” said Scott Jackson, Parks and Recreation Director. “It happens almost every year, to some degree. It’s nothing to worry about.”
A City crew was at the lake Tuesday morning to clean the fish up before they became a nuisance or a health hazard.
The fish — mostly carp — died as a result of overpopulation resulting in a lack of adequate oxygen in the water.
The phenomena is actually healthy for the lake as it corrects the overpopulation issue and leaves healthier fish behind.
Plans for the park on the city’s eastern entrance call for both lakes to be dredged and deepened and a third lake added in the coming months, which also will help sustain a healthier aquatic system.
A larger aerator also could be added to the larger pond, which adds additional oxygen to the water.
Currently only the small pond on the park’s north side has an aerator, however to the novice eye it looks simply like a fountain at the lake’s center.
The machine actually increases circulation and adds oxygen to the water.
It currently is undergoing maintenance, however its absence is not what caused the fish kill.
Most of the dead fish have been cleaned and removed, but city officials say a few more could surface in the coming days.