Over 1,100 fish were killed in a Co. Antrim river after reports of slurry being discharged into the water source were received by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA).

The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) confirmed that at 8:30p.m on Friday, May 17, the NIEA received a water pollution report indicating that there was slurry in the Four Mile Burn tributary at Newmills, near Doagh in Co. Antrim.

NIEA deployed water quality inspectors to the area to confirm the report and to assess the environmental impact and a joint investigation with DAERA Inland Fisheries is ongoing.

The source was identified and NIEA has collected statutory samples in respect of its Water (NI) Order 1999 investigation.

NIEA engaged with the owner of the premises involved throughout Saturday afternoon to identify the cause and to prevent further discharge to the river.

From the assessment of the impact on the fishery, a major fishkill has been confirmed, with 1,109 brown trout of varying ages being killed.

DAERA confirmed the investigations are “continuing” to ensure all necessary information is collected in a “timely manner”.

Ulster Angling Federation officers met with representatives of both the Antrim and District Angling Association and Ballynure Angling Club from the Six Mile Water catchment following the fish kill.

The federation has said it will “work closely” with the angling community and relevant stakeholders to find the “best way forward, get answers and lobby for stronger fines for polluters”.

The Four Mile Burn runs from Tildarg through farm land, then in through Parkgate village, where it then enters the Six Mile River.

In a post on social media, the ADAA said “several” of their members walked three miles of the stream and counted “hundreds of dead fish from last years crop, many more “from this seasons crop”.

It said the fish killed included brown trout, dollaghan parr and many salmon parr.