People, Environment

Wetland Fish Death Under Review

Wetland Fish Death Under ReviewWetland Fish Death Under Review

Experts conducted field investigations in the southwestern Hoor al-Azim Wetland in Khuzestan Province when a large number of dead fish were reported.

During his visit to the wetland's fourth pool, Ahmadreza Lahijanzadeh, the head of the provincial office of Department of Environment, said rising water temperature during the hot summer days usually leads to such fish deaths, though other reasons could also be involved.

Speaking to YJC, the official said some 500 fish fingerlings have been washed ashore.

Lahijanzadeh said water recession and excessive water extraction for agricultural purposes siphon off a huge part of the wetland's water, leaving almost no water for the aquatic species.

To make things worse, agricultural wastewaters also pour into the wetland.

"The rise in temperature leads to high evaporation and decline in water quality. No fish can survive in low-oxygen, polluted water," he said, explaining the other possible reasons.

Reportedly, the water right from Karkheh Dam on Karkheh River is estimated to be 150 cubic meters, which feed the wetland through 13 streams.

In April, some 120 cubic meters of water flowed into the wetland.

"The worrying situation arises when the water right is not observed. We will immediately discuss the issue with Khuzestan Water and Power Authority," Lahijanzadeh said.  

The Hoor al-Azim Wetland in the oil-rich Khuzestan Province was completely dried up by the Oil Ministry to extract oil using outdated techniques. The wetland has now become the biggest domestic source of dust storms in western Iran.

Hoor-al-Azim is a trans-boundary wetland located on the border of Iran and Iraq and is fed by Karkheh River, Daviraj River and a branch of Arvandroud river.


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