ECOLOGISTS in Elche have warned of the risk of an outbreak of botulism in El Hondo.
This has been due to the lack of water in local reservoirs, and the Friends of the Wetlands (AHSA) organisation have called for those in Levante and Poniente to be completely drained and cleaned.
According to the environmental group, the high temperatures experienced during the summer resulted in higher than usual evaporation levels and an increased demand from agricultural land for irrigation from the reservoirs. This left a large number of dead fish that could lead to an onset of botulism. The dead fish were removed, but only the complete drying out of both reservoirs to eliminate the common carp population would help reduce further risks.
The vicious circle continues as the lack of water leads to the eventual lack of underwater vegetation which in turn affects the food cycle of numerous water-based birds. This has led to the deaths of thousands of waterfowl from episodes of avian botulism linked to where the dead fish are found.