Shell­fish warn­ing over al­gal bloom

Southern Gazette (Belmont) - - NEWS -

ON­GO­ING al­gal blooms have prompted warn­ings about eat­ing shell­fish from the Swan River.

The Depart­ment of Parks and Wildlife con­tin­ued to warn peo­ple about the health risks of peo­ple con­sum­ing shell­fish from ar­eas where Kare­nia-type di­noflag­el­late al­gae lev­els are el­e­vated.

Fish kills are also a pos­si­bil­ity in the Can­ning River near River­ton and the Swan River near Bayswa­ter where Kar­lo­dinium, a di­noflag­el­late, is mod­er­ately high.

This species presents no di­rect hu­man health con­cerns but the Depart­ment of Health ad­vises peo­ple to avoid swim­ming in wa­ter that looks dis­coloured, murky or smells un­pleas­ant.

Remco van San­ten, of My Clean River which was formed in July last year, said the river’s health had been in de­cline for decades and re­ferred to his re­port that claimed be­fore the State Elec­tion that the river’s health was an off-there­cord po­lit­i­cal foot­ball.

He felt there was a greater op­por­tu­nity for change with the new La­bor Gov­ern­ment and he was hop­ing to see dif­fer­ent fer­tilis­ers used up­stream in tar­geted ar­eas.

He said the Kare­nia-type di­noflag­el­late was stim­u­lated by fer­tilis­ers and an­i­mal waste.

He also wants land use for an­i­mal and re­cre­ational ac­tiv­i­ties to be re­viewed, no­tably horse and cat­tle, which con­trib­ute about one-third of the pol­lu­tion.

Mr van San­ten wants to see Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple in­volved in ad­dress­ing the is­sues, and an in­for­ma­tion and tourist cen­tre built for the Swan River.

Ques­tions for En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter Stephen Daw­son were di­rected to DPaW, which said the Gov­ern­ment com­mit­ted $300,000 a year for com­mu­nity groups en­gaged in river­care projects.

“The Depart­ment of Parks and Wildlife has been work­ing with other gov­ern­ment agen­cies and nat­u­ral re­source man­age­ment (NRM) groups in the Avon Catch­ment on pro­grams to im­prove fer­tiliser ef­fi­ciency and soil health,” a depart­ment spokes­woman said.

Call FishWatch on 1800 815 507 to re­port any dead or slug­gish fish in the river.

Remco van San­ten, of the group My Clean River, would like to see changes to bring the Swan back to health.

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