Hundreds of dead fish appear at Radium Springs - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Hundreds of dead fish appear at Radium Springs

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The drought is killing hundreds of fish at Radium Springs. The creek that normally connects the springs to the Flint River is dry, and the level of the blue hole is so low, the fish don't have enough oxygen to survive. 

The natural spring is usually 24 feet deep. Levels have dropped at least four feet. The blue hole that's usually flowing with crystal clear water is still, and the creek has dried up pushing all the fish into one small area.

DNR Fisheries Supervisor, Rob Weller, says hundreds of fish have died including large mouth bass, blue gill and gar. Last week, Dougherty County Public works had to remove 200 fish.

Tom Barclay walked out to the springs last week to find the unpleasant surprise. He doesn't remember levels being this low since 2002.

"The smell was awful," said Barclay. "There were dead fish everywhere. It looked terrible."

Weller is worried too. DNR bought the spring to make it a refuge habitat for gulf striped bass which need springs to survive in the Flint River.

"It's sad the spring is low and has stopped flowing," said Weller. "It's not serving the ecological function it was serving prior to that. It was no longer a refuge for striped bass."

Officials and neighbors hope a steady rainfall will turn this still spring into the flowing blue hole it's meant to be.

Radium Springs is one of 15 major springs around Albany. DNR officials say,without rain, more of them could see the same problems as Radium.