Three California condors have died from avian flu in northern Arizona and authorities try to find out what killed 5 others within the flock, the Nationwide Park Service introduced this week.
A sick feminine condor suspected of getting lead poisoning was discovered lifeless on March 20 and testing confirmed it had Extremely Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI), the park service mentioned.
Two different birds later discovered lifeless additionally examined constructive, whereas check outcomes aren’t but accomplished for 5 others, the park service mentioned.
The birds are a part of a inhabitants that strikes all through northern Arizona and southern Utah, together with Grand Canyon Nationwide Park, the park service mentioned.
The Peregrine Fund, which manages the Arizona-Utah flock, additionally captured 5 different birds that appeared sick and despatched them to a wildlife rescue in Phoenix. One chicken died and the opposite 4 have been quarantined, officers mentioned.
Publicity to the virus is predicted to rise through the condors’ northward spring migration.
HPAI hasn’t been detected in different populations in California or Mexico’s Baja California, in keeping with the park service.
Avian flu happens primarily in birds together with home chickens, nevertheless it has been present in different animals, wild and home, in all U.S. states besides Hawaii.
People are thought-about to be at low danger from HPAI, though there have been reported infections.
The California condor is among the world’s largest birds with a wingspan of as much as 10 toes. The birds as soon as patrolled the sky from Mexico to British Columbia. Condors can reside for 60 years and fly huge distances, which is why their vary can lengthen into a number of states.
The inhabitants plummeted to the brink of extinction within the Nineteen Seventies due to searching, habitat destruction and lead poisoning from animals consuming shot with lead bullets.
Within the Eighties, wildlife officers captured the final remaining 22 condors and took them to the San Diego and Los Angeles zoos to be protected and bred in captivity. The birds have been then launched into sanctuaries and nationwide parks the place they are often monitored.
The birds have been protected as an endangered species by federal regulation since 1967 and by California state regulation since 1971.
California condors have been making a comeback within the wild and now occupy elements of California’s Central Coast, Arizona, Utah and Baja California, Mexico. The overall wild inhabitants now numbers greater than 300 birds.