October 22, 2013 at 12:17 am #673MikeKeymaster
April 15, 2005
Investigators with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are studying
whether geese found dead in and around Keizer earlier this year were
Federal authorities took over the investigation about one month ago
after the state Department of Fish and Wildlife was unable to
determine the source of what killed about 150 cackling Canada geese
at a private pond off Wheatland Road.
The birds were found dead in February at a pond owned by Morse Bros.
rock products. Water tests from the pond determined that it was not
the cause of birds’ deaths.
Joan Jewitt, a spokeswoman for the federal agency, said that
investigators are looking at possible connections to several other
geese deaths in the Mid-Willamette Valley. Those deaths included
birds found at the William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge near
Corvallis, Baskett Slough National Wildlife Refuge near Dallas and
Staats Lake in Keizer.
Only cackling Canada geese, a small subspecies of Canada geese, have
been affected in each of these cases. The birds are either found
floating dead in the water or lying on their stomachs on dry ground
with wings flared out. Before dying, many seemed to suffer
convulsions, witnesses have said.
Tests on bird carcasses at a federal laboratory in Madison, Wis., the
National Wildlife Health Center, have ruled out natural causes and
all possible diseases, such as avian influenza or West Nile virus,
Investigators now are looking at unnatural causes, such as poison,
she said. The dead birds were sent last week to laboratories in
Michigan for toxicology tests, she said.
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