Algae bloom on lake raises concerns about fish welfare

By Mary Dennehy

CONCERNS have been raised for the welfare of fish living in the lake in Ballymount Park due to an increase in algae blooms, which are covering the water’s surface.

Residents have also complained of a bad smell coming off the lake.

Sean Crowe Ballymount Lake 1

Deputy Sean Crowe is calling for immediate action

Dublin South West TD Sean Crowe (Sinn Féin) visited Ballymount Park and told The Echo that he believes “it’s only a matter of time before dead fish begin floating to the surface” due to an increase in algae growth.

He added: “Residents who use the park have also complained of a bad smell coming off the lake and that the odour is putting them off walking in the park in recent weeks.”

Deputy Crowe, who is calling for “immediate action”, raised his concerns with South Dublin County Council – and welcomed the local authority’s response.

When contacted by The Echo, Teresa Walsh, Director of Environment, Water and Climate Change said: “The council is aware that there has been an increase in algae growth in Ballymount Lake in recent months.

“This is a natural phenomenon and the growth can be attributed to a number of factors such as a low volume of water entering the lake, slow water circulation and the presence of high levels of organic matter.

“In order to deal with the issue it is proposed to commence de-silting works in the lake.”

According to Ms Walsh, similar works have been carried out recently to the Mill Race in Waterstown Park in Palmerstown and the Gunpowder Mill Pond, Corkagh Park.

“The works are necessary to maintain an optimum balance between open water and semi-aquatic conditions, which in turn can enhance the habit value of the waterbody,” Ms Walsh said.

“It is proposed to adopt a similar approach to the Ballymount Lake which may also include the phasing of works over a number of seasons.

“All works carried out in watercourse are undertaken in line with Inland Fisheries Ireland requirements regarding fish spawning activity.”

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