GRAPHIC IMAGES: Birds die at Botanic Gardens after fish kill

JUST days after thousands of dead fish washed up along a lake in the Bundaberg Botanic Gardens, the carcasses of dead birds have been found floating in the same water.

Bundy man Darryl Hampson stumbled across the gruesome sight on a visit to the gardens over the weekend.

What he saw shocked him.

"I found one dead duck and then three more," Mr Hampson said.

"Then I saw more ... 12 dead and three dying on Friday."

On Sunday, about 14 dead birds were spotted along the banks, some caught in rocks and others floating in the shallows.

A majority of the dead birds were pacific black ducks.

"I came to look at the fish the next morning and saw the poor helpless ducks," he said.

Along the edge of the water, shallow trenches were dug and filled with dead fish, with birds eating the rotting fish.

Mr Hampson said he couldn't understand why the fish were buried right next to the water, where the birds could dig them up and eat them.

"It can't stay there, they have to move it ... for tourism too, it's not a good look for tourism," he said.

On Saturday, the NewsMail sent questions to the council, asking if they were aware of the dead birds.

On Sunday a council spokesman said it was the first he had heard of the deaths.

DEAD BIRDS: Darryl Hampson
DEAD BIRDS: Darryl Hampson Katie Hall

A Biosecurity Queensland spokesman said the department would investigate today.

The spokesman said by the description of the circumstances, it could be a case of botulism that killed the ducks.

One cause of botulism is eating foods contaminated with the bacteria and the spokesman said the dead fish could be a culprit.

On Thursday, thousands of fish floated to the banks of the lake in the gardens.

Last week, the council told the NewsMail the fish deaths could have been caused by water being pumped from the large upstream lake in the Botanic Gardens, into the one at the Chinese Gardens.

The spokesman said this was done to "improve its environmental health and amenity".

"This fish kill could very well have occurred regardless of the water pumping, given the hot and dry conditions," he said.

In 2016, a significant number of animals including birds and turtles were found dead at the botanic gardens in what was suspected to be the result of poisoning.



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