Vet Voices

WVDNR advises all bird feeders to be discontinued due to unknown virus

West Virginia Headlines

FILE – In this Dec. 13, 2019, file photo, thousands of snow geese take flight over a farm field at their winter grounds, in the Skagit Valley near Conway, Wash. The Biden administration on Monday, March 8, 2021, reversed a policy imposed under former President Donald Trump that drastically weakened the government’s power to enforce a century-old law that protects most U.S. bird species. Trump ended criminal prosecutions against companies responsible for bird deaths that could have been prevented. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (WVDNR) is advising that all bird feeders and suet feeders be discontinued until further notice.

According to Three Rivers Avian Center, the announcement is due to the rapid spread of an unidentified virus affecting wild birds across the state. Three Rivers says the bird being hardest hit by the virus are; starlings, blue jays, robins, grackles, and brown-headed cowbirds. Symptoms being seen include swollen eyes, breathing issues, weakness, and blood coming from the mouth, with death following soon after.

While researchers try to find an explanation for the virus, Three Rivers Avian Center has some tips for those curious about their own feeders.

  • Cease feeding birds until this wildlife mortality event has concluded
  • Clean feeders and bird baths with a ten percent bleach solution
  • Avoid unnecessary handling of birds and wear disposable gloves if handling occurs
  • Keep pets away from sick or dead birds as a standard precaution.

The Center says hummingbird feeders are still okay to leave out, but to make sure they are cleaned regularly and have fresh sugar water.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

video

More Video

Don't Miss

Trending Stories

More Top News

WTRF 7News Twitter