The footage, depicting the apparent aftermath of an environmental disaster, was published on Saturday by a local resident. It shows a water reservoir, the coast of which is covered with glistening fish bodies and seagulls feasting on them.

“The stench is unreal, absolutely terrible,” the cameraman comments in Russian.

The video was reportedly filmed at the Arshan-Zelmen water reservoir, which is located some 150km north from the provincial capital Elista and supplies water to local farms. It was not immediately clear what could have caused the mass death of waterlife in Kalmykia.

This summer the region already suffered from a serious drought, which resulted in significant damage to graze farming, the region’s primary industry. Half of Kalmykia’s grazelands became barren due to absence of rains and a locust invasion, forcing farmers to buy fodder to feed their livestock.

Russia’s Investigative Committee has launched a review of the circumstances surrounding the incident to decide on further legal action.

This comes just weeks after a mysterious mass death of aquatic creatures in Russia’s Far East. Apocalyptic scenes of the Kamchatka Pacific coast littered with washed-out octopuses, crabs, starfish, sponges, sea urchins, and other marine animals horrified the country.

The cause of that die-out remains unidentified, with local officials blaming “red tide,” a bloom of algae that depletes water of oxygen, rather than some man-made disaster.

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