Drop in Klamath River flows leads to fish die-off

KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. (AP) — A drop in river flows in the Klamath River has resulted in a die-off of fish and other creatures below the Keno Dam in southern Oregon.

The Bureau of Reclamation says the water was drawn down to charge an irrigation canal for Basin farmers.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife confirmed the fish kill to Oregon Public Broadcasting. Fish including sculpin, catfish and minnow were stranded due to low river flows.

The Bureau of Reclamation, which controls the river flows, began dropping the levels in late April as part of a water-borrowing deal between farmers and the utility that owns the dams farther downstream.

OPB reports that over a two-day period, the federal agency decreased flows out of Upper Klamath Lake by about 85 percent.

A southern Oregon fishing guide noticed the dead fish and reported it to officials.