(Photo By Cephas - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0)
In a recent urgent alert posted on their website, the Lindsay Wildlife Experience, a prominent local museum and emergency wildlife care facility wrote that "Lindsay Wildlife Experience is advising Contra Costa County residents to take down their bird feeders to help curb the potential spread of a deadly disease."
The disease is salmonella, and the Lindsay Wildlife Experiences says that the deadly disease has already sickened at least 20 Pine Siskins who were treated at the organization's facility in Walnut Creek, California.
More Siskins have been dying in the area, too, and the deaths have been linked to salmonella. The salmonella, authorities believe, is being transmitted by backyard birdfeeders put up by well-meaning local citizens.
The Lindsay Wildlife Experience offered the following guidance to keep local birds safe:
If you are seeing sick birds in your yard or neighborhood, please immediately remove your bird feeder(s) for up to three weeks to allow the birds to “socially distance” and prevent further spread of the disease. Weekly cleaning of bird feeders, including with a bleach and water solution, can help prevent feeders from becoming a breeding ground for bacteria. Do not overfill feeders and avoid using platform-style feeders where birds can perch.
If you have a birdfeeder in the East Bay, you may want to take it down now to keep local bird populations from getting sick.
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