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Fri Jun 25, 2021, 05:40 AM

We have a serious bird problem in KY and surrounding states. [View all]

Kentuckians encouraged to report sick, dead birds to Kentucky Fish and Wildlife

See: https://fw.ky.gov/News/Pages/Bird-Mortality-Event-news.aspx

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 18, 2021) To enhance its investigation into unexplained bird mortality occurring in Kentucky, the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources is asking the public to report encounters with sick and dead birds through a new online reporting system.

In late May, the department began receiving reports of sick and dying birds with eye swelling and crusty discharge, as well as neurological signs. Wildlife agencies in Indiana, Maryland, Ohio, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and West Virginia have reported similar problems.

State wildlife agencies are working with diagnostic laboratories to investigate the cause of mortality. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife has sent more than 20 samples for lab testing to the Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study at the University of Georgia. More results are pending, but no definitive cause of death has been identified at this time.

In Kentucky, reports of sick and dying birds have come from Jefferson, Kenton and Boone counties. Species affected thus far have included blue jays, common grackles and European starlings, but other species may be affected as well.

They go on to say....
Birds congregating at feeders and baths can transmit disease to one another. Therefore, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife recommends the public follow these guidelines:

In Jefferson, Boone and Kenton counties:

Cease feeding birds until further notice (when this issue has been resolved);


Clean feeders and birdbaths with a 10 percent bleach solution immediately, then weekly thereafter;
Avoid handling birds, but wear disposable gloves if handling is necessary; and
Keep pets away from sick or dead birds as a standard precaution.

If you must remove dead birds, it is recommended that you place them in a sealable plastic bag and dispose of the bag in a secured outdoor trash can.

This is heartbreaking, as watching my bird friends is one of my few sources of joy, particularly during this pandemic. A few days ago, I watched a mourning dove acting very strangely on my back patio, as if a parasite was attacking its nervous system. I'm going to report that event to the State.

I'm now curious if this could be coming from contaminated bird seed or something carried by other critters such as squirrels.

If you live in one of the above listed states or even an adjacent state, I suggest going to your state's fish and wildlife web site to see if there's a similar notice. Please report any strange behavior or unusual amount of dead birds to your state.

Let's hope this is resolved soon. I now have a new do-list item for today: remove, empty and secure all my feeders and dump my two birdbaths. This will be a good opportunity to give everything a good cleaning.


(cross-posted from Birders Group)

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Reply We have a serious bird problem in KY and surrounding states. [View all]
KY_EnviroGuy Jun 2021 OP
NNadir Jun 2021 #1