Iowa DNR uses pesticide to remove fish from lake
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is using a pesticide that has been linked to Parkinson’s disease to eliminate undesirable fish from a Des Moines lake as part of a decade-long effort to improve the habitat and water quality.
Rotenone was applied Tuesday to the south side of Easter Lake to remove common carp and gizzard shad, The Des Moines Register reported .
Residents and animals should avoid contact with the water during treatment, according to a department release. It will take a couple days for the chemical to dissolve into flowing streams, and possibly weeks to dissolve in nearby ponds and the main lake. Public areas will be closed until further notice, the release said.
“At this time, approximately 50 landowners are located adjacent to the areas where the specifically targeted rotenone applications will be conducted, and each will be notified by door hangers with specific information,” DNR spokesman Alex Murphy said in a statement last month. “The areas will be completely closed off to the public during the application process.”
Mark Flammang, a DNR fisheries management biologist, disputed concerns last month regarding studies that linked the pesticide to Parkinson’s disease. Flammang said more research indicates rotenone is safe. The DNR has used rotenone for decades to kill fish, bacteria and fungi as part of waterway restorations projects in Okoboji, Clear and Carter lakes.
The DNR, Polk County Conservation Board, city of Des Moines, Polk Soil and Water Conservation District and other groups began working to improve Easter Lake’s water quality and habitat in 2008.
Information from: The Des Moines Register, http://www.desmoinesregister.com