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Extreme Heat, Heavy Rains & Pollutants Blamed Latest Fish Kill In Biscayne Bay

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - City and county officials are trying to pinpoint what caused another fish kill in Biscayne Bay.

It happened on the east side of the bay in the area of the 79th Street Basin, close to North Beach.

According to the county, there were approximately 250 killed on Monday. That's a far cry from the big fish kill last summer when tens of thousands of fish washed up onshore due to pollution in the bay.

Many people, including the mayor of North Bay Village, took to social media to post images of the dead fish.

According to experts, high temperatures and recent heavy rains caused this problem. They said pollutants like fertilizer and leaking septic tanks added to it because they cause more algae to bloom. That algae takes up the oxygen, depriving the fish.

Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava issued a statement saying they are trying to address the problem.

"This incident is another reminder that the health of our beloved Bay is in jeopardy, which is why Miami-Dade County is committed to taking all possible action to turn around the crisis facing our waters. We are working to aggressively accelerate investments in replacing or repairing critical water infrastructure and septic to sewer conversion," said Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava in a statement.

The mayor said earlier this year, the county began implementing a ban on fertilizer use during the rainy season, May 15th through October 31st, when nutrients are more likely to be carried in water flowing off the land.

Miami Beach officials said they are working with the Department of Environmental Resources to determine how to fix the problem.

The Department of Regulatory and Economic Resources said in a statement that "two Division of Environmental Resources Management (DERM) teams are out on boats along with a team from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection Biscayne Bay Aquatic Preserves (DEP BBAP) to conduct water quality surveys in the affected basins."

"At this time there is no definitive answer as to the cause of this fish kill. DERM is investigating site conditions with the current fish kill and looking at circumstances around the last fish kill including potential differences and similarities," according to the Department of Regulatory and Economic Resources.

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