Alabama Anglers Report Hundreds of Dead Redfish in Mobile Bay

by Megan Molseed
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Alabama anglers were shocked last weekend when many spotted dozens of dead redfish in Mobile Bay. The cause of the fish kill remains unknown. However, experts have been working hard to determine whether or not the water in the fish-kill areas is harming the redfish. While the find is a shocking one, experts note that a fish kill of these redfish is not necessarily unusual in spring. But, experts note, the timing is earlier than usual. The reports of the dead fish have ranged from locations along the Eastern Shore of Fort Morgan, Dauphin Island, and Grand Bay as well.

At A Glance

  • Alabama officials received reports of a fishkill event in areas all along the Alabama coast.
  • What, exactly, led to this kill is still unknown.
  • Experts are hard at work determining the possible cause.
  • A spring fishkill event is a normal occurrence in the area. However, it’s unusual that it would happen so early in the spring.
  • Officials do note that there are no warnings regarding the consumption of fish from the area. But, thoroughly cooking the meat is strongly advised.

Anglers Spot Hundreds of Dead Redfish Along the Alabama Coast

Last weekend officials began receiving reports of hundreds of dead redfish along areas of the Alabama coast. It was no doubt a distressing scene for anglers in the area. Redfish are one of the area’s most valued game fish.

“I’m sick to my stomach,” notes Blake Michaleski, one of the anglers who reported the distressing find last weekend.

“Hundreds of breeder bull reds dead along the tideline at the mouth of Mobile Bay,” Michaleski continues. The Alabama angler goes on to note that he and another angler in the area estimated that thousands of these redfish were dead throughout the area.

The Shocking Redfish Kill Doesn’t Mean Anglers Will Be Facing A Low Stock This Season

Michaleski reported the disturbing sight to officials. Thankfully, despite the unfortunate loss this fishkill brings to the redfish population, it’s far from “game-over” for anglers.

“It’s scary to see that many dead fish, but there are other fish reproducing so right now we don’t think it jeopardizes the spawning stock population,” says University of Southern Alabama Director of the School of Marine and Environmental Sciences Sean Powers. However, Powers adds, the official cause of the redfish kill has been difficult to pinpoint.

The Alabama Marine Resources Division Keeps Public Updated On Recent Fish Kill Event

Shortly after the news of the dead fish was reported, the Alabama Marine Resources Division began keeping the public updated on the event via its Facebook page.

“Reported locations of the dead fish ranged from Point Clear and other locations on the Eastern Shore to Fort Morgan, Dauphin Island and Grand Bay,” notes the Facebook post.

“It is difficult to determine the cause of this fish kill,” the message continues.

The Facebook post goes on to note that the water has been tested for certain organisms. Organisms that could have caused the kill. But, the report notes, the “samples indicated low counts of organisms which have been known to kill fish.”

The report also notes that there are no current health advisories regarding the consumption of fish. But, the post notes, it’s still important to “thoroughly cook your catch.”