GOODYEAR, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - Dead and dying fish are building up in a human-made lake in Goodyear, and neighbors say they can no longer stand the sights and smells.
“As soon as it started heating up, we really noticed the smell,” says Judith King, a resident at Estrella Mountain Ranch.
The homeowner’s association says it’s been battling an algae bloom in the lake brought on by long periods of excessive heat. The high temperatures have apparently choked off the oxygen in the water, killing off fish in the community lake.
“It smells like animals just rotting,” says resident Samantha Smith. “To me, it seems like the problem’s just getting worse.”
Some residents say crews have scooped out a lot of dead fish in recent days, but many are still hugging the side of the lake right next to a rec center. There’s a thick layer of green and blue goop covering the floating fish.
“We can’t enjoy the community,” says Lindsey Nunez whose parents own a home in Estrella Mountain Ranch. “They pay for the amenities, and they’re not able to enjoy that main piece.”
The HOA says it’s been updating residents on the condition of the lake weekly. Most residents who spoke to Arizona’s Family say they’re receiving those updates, but they argue the process of cleaning up the lake is taking too long.
“I’m hoping they’re keeping their word and getting it cleaned up soon,” says King.
Statement from Estrella HOA, Rick Cunefare, Executive Director?
“We understand your concerns about the current condition of the lakes (algae bloom) and the recent loss of fish. Please note that while inconvenient, this is not an isolated event specific to Estrella. Across the Valley, planned communities and golf courses with manufactured lakes have been challenged with the extended period of excessive heat, which has contributed to the loss of oxygen levels in the lakes. When this occurs, the dissolved oxygen levels become critically low, which impacts the oxygen supply to fish. We are working with Arizona Lake and Pond Management (ALPM) to address the condition of North Lake. At the same time, ALPM has been treating an algae bloom, a process that requires multiple treatments over a period of time. We will continue to keep our residents informed and updated on our progress.”