AS many as 200 fish have died at a Scarborough lake after being starved of oxygen.
The fish were left desperately gasping for air at Scarborough Mere after the lake’s oxygen levels plummeted following the recent weather.
Firefighters yesterday pumped gallons of water back into the site’s Match Lake to increase the air flow.
Environment Agency bosses confirmed the changeable atmospheric pressure was the cause with tests showing the lake’s air level was just 20 per cent oxygen after the heavy downpours.
In contrast, The Mere’s sister lakes had 132 per cent and 118 per cent oxgyen respectively.
Andy Maccalaugh, junior match secretary for Scarborough Mere Angling Club, said the lake would be closed for three days while water pumps - including one borrowed from Wykeham Lakes - worked to aerate the lake.
He said: “The fish were coming to the surface gasping for air.
“They were so lethargic you could actually lift them out of the water.
“I have never seen anything like it before. It hasn’t affected the bigger fish but roach, chubb and barble have suffered.
“You don’t realise the sheer volume of fish in that lake but when this was happening you could see so many of them coming to the surface.”
Mr Maccalaugh said the club, which has around 270 members, would cope with the situation but said it had been a worrying time.
He added: “If it had been any worse we would have struggled to get back on our feet. We’ve had to cancel some junior matches which is a big blow for the youngsters too.”