Toxic spill suspected in large fish die-off in Ottawa, Lièvre rivers

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By Kelly Egan, Ottawa Citizen, July 19, 2019

A large number of dead fish found in the Ottawa River near Masson-Angers, Que. and Clarence-Rockland, Ont., were probably killed by a toxic spill, an investigation has concluded.

Quebec’s wildlife ministry conducted about a dozen necropsies on fish found floating July 8 near the confluence of the Lièvre and Ottawa rivers, at Masson-Angers, and further downstream.

The Ottawa Riverkeeper reports ministry tests at a lab in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que., could find no sign of infectious disease, suggesting a toxin introduced into the river caused the sizeable die-off. Tests have yet to discover what the toxin might be or when and where the spill occurred. The Riverkeeper reports several hundred, possibly thousands, of fish were killed.