Chinatown garden attempting to save remaining koi from hungry otter in East Vancouver

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      As an elusive otter has continued to decimate the koi population in a Vancouver Chinatown pond, garden staff and the local park board have resorted to new measures to save the remaining carp.

      According to the Vancouver park board, the otter that has invaded a pond at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden has continued to both feast on koi, which are valued between $1,000 to $5,000, over the weekend and evade any capture efforts.

      Up to 10 fish have been reported killed. Only four fish remain alive.

      The garden had announced on November 19 that an otter had been spotted in the pond and the park board launched attempts to catch and relocate it.

      On November 22, the park board announced that, in consultation with the B.C. Ministry of Environment, it had enlisted the help of a wildlife relocation expert to help capture and move the otter to the Fraser Valley.

      Sadie Brown/screenshot

      Although the park board and garden staff previously stated that they had avoided capturing and relocating koi due to the stress it would cause (as garden staff explained that koi are easily affected by changes in environment), they have since shifted to trying to save the remaining fish without draining the pond.

      One koi was caught and relocated to the Vancouver Aquarium. However, CTV reported that high water levels, combined with murkiness, have complicated efforts.

      Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden

      The garden remains closed until the otter is caught.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.