Dead fish wash up on riverbanks in southeast Iraq due to arid conditions

Thousands of dead fish have washed ashore in southeast Iraq, prompting an official investigation into the wildlife disaster that officials said Monday may be linked to drought conditions.

Recently, a large number of dead fish were washed up on the banks of the Amshan river in Maysan province, which borders Iran.

Khodr Abbas Salman, a Maysan province official, has verified that some of the factors that led to these dead fish were the lack of oxygen in the river and the rise in salinity.

An environmental campaigner, Ahmed Saleh Neema, also acknowledged that it is the rising temperature that contributes to the increasing salinity and low oxygen levels in the water. It has not yet been ascertained whether toxic chemical substances also caused the huge numbers of dead fish.

However, it is certain that the dead fish will cause damage to Iraq's agriculture industry.

The water contaminated by the dead fish is no longer suitable for irrigation. Meanwhile, the decomposing dead fish will increase the water's toxicity, which will be harmful when they permeate into the land.

In a similar phenomenon in 2018, fishermen in the central province of Babylon found dead carp in their thousands, but an investigation failed to discern what had caused it.

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Source(s): AFP

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