What Is Happening To The Birds?

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Scientists and wildlife experts are investigating why songbirds are becoming sick or dying or in some cases appearing to fly erratically or stumble.

According to the Department of Natural Resources, similar incidents have been reported in at least six states. Most affected have been European starlings, blue jays and common grackles and the disorder has affected juvenile birds more than adults.

The cause of these events is not yet known, but wildlife health experts believe that congregating birds may contribute to the disorder. Federal and state wildlife experts have recommended that anyone who keeps bird feeders or bird baths in the yard take these precautions, according to DNREC:

·       Cease feeding birds at feeders and providing water in bird baths

·       Before reactivating bird feeders and baths when it is deemed safe by animal health experts to do so, clean them with a 10% bleach solution

·       Avoid handling wild birds, wearing disposable gloves if it is necessary to handle a bird

·       Keep domestic pets away from sick and dead wild birds

If residents observe a live wild bird exhibiting the symptoms as described above, they may contact Tri-State Bird Rescue & Research at 302-737-9543. Additional information can be found on its website at tristatebird.org. If residents find a dead wild bird they suspect displayed any of the above-mentioned symptoms, contact the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife at 302-735-3600.