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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries
Wednesday 11 December 2019

Results for abalone fish kill of north of Yallingup

​​​​Update to Fish Kill Notification
- 11 December, 2019 at 9.50am
Analysis of the formalin-fixed abalone samples by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) has indicated: 

    • The animals were in good nutritional condition. 
    • One animal had symptoms previously reported in abalone exposed to stressors such as high water temperature. 
    • It is likely that the animals died suddenly.
    • There was no evidence of an infectious cause for the fish kill.

As of yesterday, no dead abalone were noted along this stretch of beach, which is about one kilometres north of Yallingup, and no further reports had been received.

To report fish kills, call the 24 hour FishWatch line on 1800 815 507.

Update to Fish Kill Notification
- 9 December, 2019 at 5pm
Early test results available to the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) indicate a very low density of phytoplankton cells was detected in the water sampling. 

There was no evidence of abalone viral ganglioneuritis (AVG) by molecular testing and on histological analysis of the abalone samples. 

Analysis of formalin-fixed samples is continuing.
Report fish kills to the 24 hour FishWatch line on 1800 815 507.

Fish Kill Notification
- 2 December, 2019

Investigations are underway into a marine fish kill, involving an estimated 800 abalone, along with other shellfish species, including crabs and various molluscs, found dead along more than a kilometre stretch of beach, north of Yallingup.

Parks and Wildlife Service officers, from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions who inspected the site today, also noticed a red tinge to the high water mark, which could indicate that a cyanobacterium known as Trichodesmium sp. may have been present in the ocean at the time of the fish kill.

There have also recently been low tides and hot temperatures in the area.

Samples of sea water, dead abalone and the other marine species will undergo laboratory testing in order to determine what has caused the fish kill.

  Photo Credit - DBCA Parks and Wildlife Service   

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development officers are monitoring the situation and updates will be issued, when further information is available.

In the mean-time we urge people to stay safe by following the general Department of Health fish kill advice:

    • not to swim in areas of water with large numbers of dead and decomposing fish because they may contain high levels of bacteria and have an objectionable odour;
    • not to fish in water with large numbers of dead fish;
    • temporarily not to collect or consume fish from the waters near a fish kill;
    • not to collect and use dead fish for bait or consumption because of the risk of high levels of bacteria; and
    • not to allow pets and other animals to come into contact with dead or decomposing fish either in the water or on shore.

Fish kills should be reported to our FishWatch 24-hour hotline on 1800 815 507.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) is responsible for responding to fish kill events that occur in ocean environments.

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation manages investigations on fish kills that occur in estuaries, rivers and naturally occurring inland water bodies.

In both circumstances, DPIRD’s laboratories carry out testing of any fish samples assessed as suitable for that purpose and this can take some time.    

More information about fish kills can be found on the department’s website at

Last modified: 11/12/2019 9:50 AM

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