Virus blamed for massive fish kill in western Mo. - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Virus blamed for massive fish kill in western Mo.

BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. (AP) - Missouri conservation officials have identified the cause of a massive carp die-off in a Jackson County lake.

The agency said Wednesday that lab tests determined the koi herpes virus was behind the deaths of about 16,000 carp in Blue Springs Lake.

It's not clear how the virus got into the lake, but fishery biologist Jake Allman says it may have resulted from someone dumping unwanted bait, koi or goldfish.

The die-off was first noticed in late May. The virus appears to have affected only carp, an invasive species that competes for food and habitat with other sport fish.

Conservation officials say the outbreak is probably over as the water temperature has risen and the number of carp has declined. The agency says the virus cannot be transmitted to humans.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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