N.S. proposes using pesticide to kill invasive smallmouth bass in St. Marys River
Nova Scotia is proposing to use pesticides for the first time in the battle against an invasive species of bass in the St. Marys River watershed.
The Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture says it filed applications with the province and the federal government to use the pesticide Rotenone to eradicate the smallmouth bass in a headwater lake that flows into the St. Marys River system.
Fisheries and Aquaculture manager Jason LeBlanc said this week the fish often become the dominant predator when they spawn in new waters, overtaking native species.
LeBlanc says the pesticide targets fish gills to obstruct their breathing, which will kill not only the bass, but other fish species in the lake.
Officials previously used electrofishing, angling and lowered the water volume of Piper Lake to try and control the smallmouth bass population since they detected the fish in July last year, but those efforts failed.
LeBlanc says the department is aiming to have the toxicant in the small lake by mid-October if the plan is approved.