A mysterious phenomenon – Schools of dead herring continue to wash up on Nova Scotia beaches

Schools of dead herring keep washing ashore along the rocky beaches of western Nova Scotia, prompting a retired scientist to enlist the help of local naturalists and bird watchers as he continues to gather data about the mysterious phenomenon. Ted Leighton, an adjunct biology professor at Nova Scotia’s University of Sainte-Anne, said Friday he has compiled more than 40 sightings since tens of thousands of dead and dying fish started appearing in St. Marys Bay in late November. The event does not appear to be over,” he said in an interview. “Whether it’s diminishing or not is really hard to say.” On Wednesday, federal scientists said they had yet to determine what is causing the die-off, despite a battery of tests. Negative results have been reported for physical damage and several types of bacterial infections and viruses. Fisheries and Oceans Canada says more tests are expected, including a check by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency for toxins caused by algae, and the possible presence of domoic acid — a toxin sometimes found in shellfish. Read the rest of the story here 16:53

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