Dead fish are being sighted all over the Maldives at present. First it was reported in July 2007 near Meemu Atoll Raiymandhoo. At that time, according to the Marine Research Centre, dead fish floating near Raiymandhoo were caused by ‘red tide’. At present the Marine Research Center says the deaths were due to low levels of oxygen. However, it is still unknown what causes the recent deaths of thousands of reef fish all over the Maldives. Officials warn locals not to touch or eat the fish. And they are also burying the dead fish to avoid health dangers.
Dead fish on the beach of a resort island in Ari Atoll and
dead reef fish in the inner habour of Malé.
In August 2007 masses of dead fish have been sighted in Ari Atoll. During the last week of November, many dead fish were spotted in the harbour at Kamadhoo of Baa Atoll.
On 2 December 2007, masses of dead fish were littering the eastern and northern beaches of Hulhumale’, around Male’ and Villigili.
Most of the dead fish spotted are reef fish such as triggerfish, groupers and parrotfish.
The Marine Research Centre has said that they were monitoring the unusual phenomenon and that they have sent dead fish specimens to India and Denmark for examination. They are also conducting research to find the oxygen concentration of the surface waters in the seas where the dead fish were spotted in order to ascertain the possible cause of masses of dead fish.
Sulfur Fumes of the Piton de la Fournaise of La Réunion
The Piton de la Fournaise volcano on the French island of La Réunion ( a small island wedged between Madagascar and Mauritius) in the Indian Ocean, which has erupted more than 150 times since the 17th century, has been active since August 2006. On May 2007, Piton de la Fournaise volcano erupted, with the total estimated volume of 120 million cubic meters, making this event one of the largest known historical eruptions. The volcano spat lava 200 meters into the air, while lava flows into the sea had killed hundreds of fish near La Réunion. The most recent activity has been called by experts as “eruption of the century”.
Are the sulfur fumes of the Piton de la Fournaise volcano causing fish dying en masse in the Maldives? If coco-de-mer can float to the Maldives from Seychelles, why cannot sulfur fumes of the Piton de la Fournaise reach the Maldives with ocean currents? Is algae poisoned by sulfur or is there an algae boom caused by sulfur? We need to wait and see the results of the tests of experts.