Manure from Wild Rose Dairy, located north of the village of La Farge, polluted a trout stream and tributary to the Kickapoo River last week killing more than 1,300 fish.

State Department of Natural Resources officials responded to the fish kill on Wednesday, Oct. 4. The fish kill included brown and brook trout in the headwaters of Otter Creek near La Farge in Vernon County.

The accident is still under investigation, but as of Monday, Oct. 9, officials said that it did not appear as if contamination had spread to the Kickapoo, a popular river for canoeists and other recreational users in southwestern Wisconsin.

DNR records show Wild Rose Dairy has a permit to house about 1,800 animal units. One animal unit is equivalent to a 1,000-pound cow.

It was not immediately known how much manure spilled into Otter Creek, but it was clearly big enough to cause the fish kill according to Andrew Savagian, a DNR spokesman.

The DNR is continuing to monitor the stream quality and the source of the spill has been controlled.


Dorothy Robson is editor of the Westby Times. Contact her at 608-637-5625.

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