Vermont Fish and Wildlife biologists have discovered tens of thousands of dead alewives in Lake Champlain, revealing the scale of the infestation of the nonnative fish.
The fish were found north of the Sandbar to Maquam Shore, in what is called the Inland Sea section of the lake.
Biologists, who were notified of the fish die-off by anglers, believe it is temperature-related.
Alewives were first found in the lake in 2005.
Biologists say the bait fish that is a member of the herring family native to the Atlantic Ocean threaten to change the lake’s ecosystem.
Alewives could displace smelt as the primary forage fish in the lake and reduce the populations of other lake fish, such as perch.