WARNING signs to stay away from the water are still in place at Lochore Meadows after a number of fish died.

Fife Council advised visitors to the country park to avoid the loch – and keep their pets away from it – after hygiene concerns were raised on Friday.

It's understood around 120 fish died and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) took samples for testing and signs are in place.

Park manager Ian Laing told the Times yesterday: “Sadly the water at Lochore Meadows continues to be out of bounds while investigations continue.

“Water testing is continuing to establish why a large number of fish, including eels and mussels, have died in the loch.

"The issue was first reported by staff at the outdoor education centre on Friday.

"Since then SEPA have been investigating and, as a precaution, all recreational activities in the loch have been cancelled including canoeing, kayaking and open water swimming.

“We hope to have more information in the next few days and will continue to keep in touch with groups and event organisers who use the loch.”

SEPA said they were taking the issue "very seriously" and a spokesperson confirmed: "We have been made aware of a fish kill in Loch Ore and are working closely with partners, including Fife Council, to establish the cause.

"SEPA officers have taken samples, which will be carefully analysed to assist with the investigation."

Cowdenbeath MSP Annabelle Ewing said: "Obviously this news is very concerning indeed.

"The very fact of 200 fish being found dead is disconcerting enough but the really important thing now is to quickly establish both the cause and whether it presents a real and ongoing threat to health for humans, pets and wildlife."

She said she had contacted Fife Council, Sepa and the Forth Rivers Trust and added: “I want to know what tests are being carried out, what the timeframe is for results of those tests being know and for those results to be made public.

“Lochore Meadows is a very popular public amenity and it is extremely important that information about this incident is shared as quickly and widely as possible.

“In the meantime, I urge member of the public to take care, to pay attention to the notices that have been put up and to follow the advice of park management.”

A triathlon is due to take place at the country park on Sunday and organiser Peter Ness, of Scurry Events, said he was "fairly confident" the event would go ahead as planned.

Around 140 people are set to take part in the swim, run and cycle event and he said: "I've been running triathlons here for about eight or nine years and the water quality has always been superb, 100 per cent.

"We're hoping it's very much an isolated incident and that we'll get the all-clear in the next day or so.

"We'll definitely run the event. I've emailed all the entrants and if we can't go in the water it will be a duathlon instead, with a run and cycle."