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Scientists probing cause of fish kill along Courtney Campbell Parkway

Beaches along the Courtney Campbell Parkway were closed Wednesday after hundreds of dead fish washed up on shore and brought a noxious odor with them.

Reports of a fish kill on Ben T. Davis Beach in Tampa began to trickle in over the weekend, and Tampa Parks and Recreation closed the beach on Wednesday as the stench grew.

Marine biologists are still trying to determine what caused it, but Red Tide has been ruled out, according to the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg.

Asked about the Ben T. Davis fish kill, Jan Landsberg, a research scientist at the institute, said scientists believe algal blooms in the area could be at fault, but they are waiting to do more tests to find the exact cause.

With high temperatures and a lot of algae in the water, Landsberg said, oxygen levels may have dropped dangerously low at night. Spiky algae also may have hurt the gills of some fish.

New water quality test results are expected today. Ben T. Davis will remain closed until further notice, city officials said.

Thomas Kaplan, Times staff writer

Scientists probing cause of fish kill along Courtney Campbell Parkway 07/30/08 [Last modified: Thursday, July 31, 2008 3:07pm]
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