It look as if a mislabeled container is the reason the Texas State Aquarium suffered catastrophic die-off in its display aquariums after treating for a parasite. According to the aquarium’s Facebook page, it appears the wrong chemical was unintentionally added to the display due to a labeling error on the bottle that led to the death of 389 fish last week.
The statement posted Tuesday on the Texas State Aquarium’s Facebook page says that what staff members thought was trichlorfon, an anti-parasite drug, was actually hydroquinine, a poisonous chemical used in film processing, as a stabilizer in paint and motor fuels, and in cosmetics.
How did they make this error? According to aquarium CEO Tom Schmid during a news conference, the hydroquinine never should have been shipped to the aquarium in the first place. He said the container was mislabeled. The aquarium hasn’t revealed the source of the chemical.
“Somehow during the potentially manufacturing process, or some point in time, that container of medicine was incorrectly mislabeled,” Schmid said
The aquarium is in the process of cleaning all of the impacted tanks to remove any trace of the toxin. Some aquariums and zoos have offered to send animals to help the restocking efforts.
[via USA Today]