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Fish kill reported too late to find pollutant source in Polk County

GRIMES – A call from a Grimes homeowner Friday afternoon alerted DNR staff to a fish kill along Little Beaver Creek on the north side of the city.

Friday evening, DNR staff found dead fish starting near the intersection of Northeast Park Drive and Northeast 27th Street. Dead fish showed up for about 1.6 miles of stream, with very few found in the creek near Highway 141.

Fisheries staff followed up on Oct. 31, finding a mix of dead fish species on site, including some larger game fish. Unfortunately, they’d been dead for several days and the pollutant that caused the fish kill had washed on downstream.

Hildebrand urges anyone who finds dead fish or a pollutant in a stream to call the DNR’s 24—hour spill number at 515-725-8694. “The sooner we can get to the site, the more likely we are to find the pollutant and stop it from spreading and doing more damage,” she said.

Field tests showed high levels of oxygen in the water and there were no signs of obvious contamination.

DNR is continuing to follow up on leads to identify the source of the fish kill, and is awaiting lab results from water samples taken Friday and Monday.