On Saturday, May 22, during what is usually a routine lowering of the water level for cleaning the UNM Duck Pond, a larger than normal amount of sludge caused water levels to decline more rapidly than what was anticipated.  As a result, the water level fell too low for some of the fish to survive.

Mary Vosevich, director, UNM Physical Plant, said, "At no time do we ever completely drain the pond so that we can preserve the fish. The lowering of the water level has always been a routine process to pump the sludge that accumulates and is necessary to provide a more sustainable environment for wildlife that is present."

She added, "We regret this incident. It is never our intent to harm the wildlife at the duck pond. We apologize to those who were upset by this occurrence and pledge to improve our procedures going forward."

Media Contact: Carolyn Gonzales, (505) 277-5920; e-mail: cgonzal@unm.edu