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DEC Fish Die-Off Update on June 18, 2021

DEC investigated recent reports of a fish die-off affecting rock bass, sunfish, smallmouth bass, and white sucker in Canandaigua Lake. Samples were obtained from impacted white sucker and smallmouth bass for analysis at the Cornell Veterinary School.


Results came back showing an infection of the bacteria Aeromonas.  Aeromonas is commonly found in water and by themselves, are not a concern.  DEC suspects that the warmwater fish in Canandaigua Lake became stressed from spawning, temperature swings, or some other stressor. This resulted in their immunity being lowered and allowed the bacteria to infect the fish.  Aeromonas does not pose a threat to humans or pets utilizing Canandaigua Lake.


As always, people should not drink unfiltered lake water and obviously sick fish should be avoided. If stressed or dead fish are handled, people should wear gloves or wash the hands with soap and water after. With proper preparation, healthy fish are safe to eat. People should continue to report large numbers of dead fish to DEC at 585-226-5343 or

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