Summary For 2014 – 638 Animal Mass Death Events In 76 Countries
Photo by Randi Nissenbaum
There has been no official explanation for the fish kill although a red tide bloom could be to blame.
One visitor from Chicago on the beach said possibly as many as 1,000 dead fish were on the beach.
An investigation is ongoing.
Nearly 500 crows have been found dead in the past four days at Baghiari village near Tarn Taran, which is close to a bird sanctuary at Sarai Amanat Khan. With bird flu causing deaths of geese at Sukhna Lake in Chandigarh, senior officials of the Animal Husbandry Department have responded quickly to take preventive measures in the area. The district administration is also on alert.
“The reasons for the birds’ deaths could be the use of pesticide in fields, contaminated water or the cold wave. However, we have sent the carcasses of birds to Regional Diagnostic Laboratory in Jalandhar to know the exact cause of the deaths,” said Dr Raminder Monga, Deputy Director, Animal Husbandry Department. He added that it would take six days to know the reason for such a high bird mortality,” said Dr Monga. Deputy Commissioner Balwinder Singh Dhaliwal met officials of various departments and constituted response teams. Amarinder Singh Tiwana, a PCS officer, has been made the point person to coordinate with all teams. Dhaliwal urged people in the area to stay alert and do not panic.
“We are keeping a close watch on the areas where migratory birds land in a big number. We have collected blood samples of migratory birds from Harike Wildlife Sanctuary,” he said.
Wildlife officials at the Harike sanctuary, spread over about 90 km, have gone into overdrive following the reports of avian influenza at Sukhna Lake in Chandigarh. Harike Divisional Forest Officer Neeraj Gupta said the bird droppings had been sent for investigation to ascertain their health status. “We have also banned the entry of visitors to the lake. All steps are being taken as a precautionary measure following the bird flu scare,” Gupta said.
Courtesy The Tribune
Environmentalists blame chemical waste from cottage industries, PCMC turns a blind eye
After hundreds of fish were found dead in the Indrayani river in Pimpri Chinchwad, local environmentalists are once again up in arms against the discharge of chemical waste generated by cottage industries which have flooded Kudalwadi, Chikhali and More wasti.
Activists claim the fauna in the river is hugely threatened by this waste and have accused the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) authorities of not paying heed despite several complaints in the past.
On Thursday, some local fishermen had gone to the river near Chikhali ghat and found several fish floating on the surface. Some of them even complained that a stink from the chemicals was emanating from the water.
Speaking to Mirror, Vikas Patil, a member of the Pune district environment committee, said that over the last few years, due to industrialisation, chemical waste has been discharged into the river on a large scale, polluting the water and killing the fish.
“We have been complaining and demanding that stern action be taken against those responsible,” he said, adding that PCMC is categorically turning a deaf ear to their complaints.
Another member of the committee said that if PCMC continued to ignore the reality of the polluted river, they would throw the dead fish inside the PCMC office.
Sanjay Kulkarni, executive engineer (environment) of PCMC, said they have not received any communication from the environmentalists group. “Once we receive official information, we will collect samples and send them to the laboratory to ascertain the exact reason,” he said.
Kulkarni ,however, added that the entire issue does not come under their purview, saying that it is the responsibility of the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB). “We will write to the MBCP,” he said.
However, Patil pointed out that it is PCMC which gives No Objection Certificates to these industries. Therefore, it is the civic body’s responsibility to see that the chemical waste gets treated, he said.
Mandar Paingankar, a professor from the Zoology department of Savitribai Phule Pune University, who has co-authored a research paper on ‘Fish Fauna of Indrayani River,’ said , “We found that the fish fauna is threatened due to various human activities — one of the main being the discharge of organic and inorganic waste which causes water pollution,” he said.
Paigankar added that there are several species of fish facing extinction and immediate measures need to be taken.
“A few years ago, researchers found a rare fish called Lipto-Thoras in the Mula-Mutha river. Due to industrialisation and subsequent pollution, this particular species faces extinction. A similar species has been found in the Indrayani, and its numbers, too, are falling fast,” he said.
Industrialists, however, have refuted all allegations. Nitin Bankar, president of Pimpri Chinchwad Small Scale Industries, said the allegations are baseless as most of the industries are mechanical firms, with hardly any paint manufacturing ones.
“There is not a single firm which has been to the riverside and there is no question of chemical waste being discharged,” he said.
Anil Mohekar, regional officer of MPCB, Pune, too, refuted the claims. Every time there are incidents of fish dying, we take samples and it has been proved that the deaths were not caused by hazardous chemicals. We have been monitoring spots from where sewage water is being discharged into the river and till date, we have no evidence that there is chemical waste present,” he said.”
“We have taken samples again and they will be tested to check for water pollutants,” Mohekar added.
According to the people in Dolakha Bazaar, dead pigeons are lying on the streets, rooftops, gardens and paddy fields. The stench from dead birds pollutes the atmosphere.
“Approximately 5,000 pigeons have died in a week,” said Bharat Shrestha, treasurer of the Bhimeshwor temple prayer and trust management committee.
Authorities are yet to respond to the situation. Vets said an unidentified virus may be responsible for the menace while the locals have got into a panic fearing a disease outbreak in humans.
“Such cases happened in the past but the damage this time is terrible,” said temple caretaker Kashi Narayan Shrestha. He added that rooftops and areas surrounding the temple had yet to be cleared of dead pigeons.
When 1,200 turtles washed ashore in Cape Cod over the last two months, people took notice. Although turtles washing ashore in Cape Cod isn’t unusual in itself, it’s the sheer quantity of these creatures that is drawing attention. According to Yahoo! News, the animals have been coming in on the tide since mid-November.
Now a record number of turtles are arriving daily, with the largest number coming ashore in a single day reaching 198. In prior years, numbers typically reached no higher than 200 annually. Wildlife experts can’t explain the increase in numbers, although some point to an increase in the turtle population in general as a possible cause.
“I am hearing a lot of theories, but the reality of the situation is we really don’t know — nobody knows,” stranding program manager at the New England Aquarium Connie Merigo said of the increase in cold-stunned turtles washing ashore in Cape Cod.
It isn’t every day that 1,200 turtles wash ashore in Cape Cod, or elsewhere. That’s why concerned staff members and more than 150 volunteers from the Massachusetts Audubon Society’s Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary in South Wellfleet are taking action. These dedicated individuals have taken to patrolling the shorelines around the clock, searching for stranded turtles in distress.
Many of the sea turtles are malnourished and susceptible to pneumonia by the time they come ashore, and their survival rate is only around 50 percent. New England Aquarium’s animal care center in Quincy has received around 700 of these distressed creatures, providing necessary treatment and nursing them back to stable condition before distributing them to other animal care facilities for further rehabilitation.
Of the 1,200 turtles washed ashore and stranded in Cape Cod, the majority are the endangered species Kemp’s ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii), which can reach 24 to 28 inches in length and weigh up to 100 pounds as adults, according to NOAA. Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are the smallest marine turtles in the world.
Speaking of turtles, as previously reported by the Inquisitr, an animal lover got the surprise of a lifetime when she discovered a two-headed snapping turtle crossing the road. Kathleen Talbot of Maine watched over a bale of turtle hatchlings to ensure their safety as they crossed the road, and she noticed that one of the little creatures was falling behind. When she brought the baby snapping turtle home and rinsed off its coating of dirt, she discovered that it had two heads protruding from a single tiny shell. She named the unusual creature Frank and Stein.
Courtesy of The Inquisitr
It will be a cautious Christmas for avian farmers in the Fraser Valley, with “bio-security” precautions taking precedence over traditional festive gatherings.
Nearly 250,000 chickens and turkeys are either dead or set to be euthanized due to avian flu, which has infected 11 sites in B.C.’s Fraser Valley since the beginning of the month.
The avian flu virus involved in an outbreak in B.C. is related to a deadly strain that has spread through Asia and is now affecting North American poultry for the first time, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has said.
Kerry Froese, a farmer with 170,000 chickens on two farms in Abbotsford, said many friends and families in the Fraser Valley farming community have halted traditional seasonal gatherings. Instead of attending annual holiday events with fellow farmers, or going to church, or even visiting family and friends with farms, they’ve hunkered down on their own properties. The concern is not that people would pass the infection to each other, but that they might inadvertently carry a contaminant on their boots or clothing to another farmer’s property.
“It just means we have to reduce contact,” Froese said.
Froese said authorities are advising farmers to change and thoroughly clean their clothing after entering their bird barns.
“What happens in the barn, stays in the barn,” is how Froese put it.
The agency has yet to determine the source of the outbreak or how it is spreading. The strain has not yet been detected in wild birds in Canada.
Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed two wild birds in Washington state tested positive for avian flu — one with H5N2 and another with H5N8. It’s not clear whether those cases are connected in any way to the B.C. outbreak.
Meanwhile poultry producers are assuring B.C. residents there will be plenty of turkeys on store shelves during the holidays despite the flu.
The industry group representing farmers who raise chickens, turkeys and eggs says it has bolstered its stock with birds from out of the province so prices remain stable.
The president of the B.C. Poultry Association says it’s important for shoppers to understand that the province’s poultry and egg products are safe to eat.
Ray Nickel says there is no evidence that eating poultry or eggs can transmit the avian flu virus to humans.
Courtesy of The Province
More than half a ton of marine species such as snapper, corvina and smooth dawned floating lifeless, and it was used by several bystanders to collect them and take them to their homes, according to testimony from pedestal cited by the newspaper El Imparcial.
The same newspaper noted researcher statements holder Ecology and Management of Coastal Ecosystems, José Alfredo Arreola Lizarraga, who attributed the cause of the deaths of marine species to lack of oxygen and has collateral relative to the red tide recorded in the area.
Courtesy of MiMorelia..com
When they went closer to check it out, he realised those white dots were hundreds of dead fish.
Alex, 22, said the place smelt “a bit off” when he made his way towards water’s edge but he never expected to see the river full of dead fish.
“When I walked towards the Ski Gardens I thought the bad smell was floodwater,” he said.
“But when I got closer to the water I realised the white dots on the water were fish. I saw them all at once and instantly thought something in the water had poisoned them due to the amount of dead fish.
“I took some photos on my phone and posted them to Facebook. Heaps of people commented on the photos and said it might have been from the floodwater and from all of the rain.”
A spokesperson from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) released a statement to the Bulletin yesterday.
The spokesperson said EHP had not received any reports of fish deaths in the vicinity of the Ski Gardens section of the Fitzroy River.
However, they had received a report of dead fish in Rockhampton’s Yeppen Lagoon on Wednesday. EHP officers had inspected the area and took water samples for analysis.
“Initial results found low dissolved oxygen levels in the water,” the spokesperson said.
“Other samples have been sent to a laboratory for further analysis. Recent high temperatures and a significantly increased in-flow to the lagoon may have contributed to the low oxygen levels.
“EHP will investigate the fish deaths in the vicinity of the Ski Gardens in the Fitzroy River.”
A “carpet” of about 30 kilometers, stretching along the shore of Lake Poopó, consisting of approximately 30 million dead fish, including mackerel and Karachis, which was described by community members in the nearby town of Untavi, as one of the worst tragedies that happen to live in the region.
On the banks of Lake Poopó, following a complaint filed on December 6, one can see three rows of dead fish. The center is the thickest, about a meter wide, up to two in some sectors, which resembles a vast and endless “carpet”. The other two are thinner, one of them, the farther the lake was partially cleaned by community sector.
It is calculated “roughly” that could reach well over 30 million dead fish, including mackerel and Karachis of different ages, from fry until the adults were ready to become marketable product.
Currently there is no official report on what caused this tragedy, but some hypotheses are handled. The pollution of the lake, is one of the few inhabitants and supporting local fishermen, however preliminary results of studies conducted by the Department of Agriculture and Livestock Service (SEDAG), show no polluting waste in the water.
The other hypothesis says that climate change caused the reduction of water; it would have been heated by the situation, generating less oxygen in the lake to fish; Added to that a wind of about 70 kilometers per hour (kmph) dragged close to the shore, where they could not return to be stunned by the lack of oxygen, being on the floor in agony.
The official report on what happened, would be known today. But fishermen await further action by the municipality of Toledo, where they belong, and the Interior, to find solutions to the conflict that is generated from the tragedy, for about 170 families are affected by the death of fish .
“There has been fishing, so far no one has caught anything, come to seek in vain, nowhere found. We have no hope of returning to the lake,” says sadly Jhon Mendoza, fisherman.
Meanwhile Valerio Rojas Flores, also a fisherman in the area, said they will seek help from the authorities. “Unfortunately up makes us want to mourn, because we never thought to see such natural disasters. We want to be emphatic that the disaster has not been simple, but catastrophic. Let’s get together to draw conclusions from the tragedy and negotiate with the Government some kind help because many (community members) will no longer even have to bring food home, “he said.
Something that caught my attention was the number of birds fell dead after the fish start to appear on the lakeshore. The director of SEDAG, Severo Choque, indicates that the strong wind caused his downfall and subsequent death, but the locals doubt it.
Parihuanas, mallards, Khasas and taracas are bird species whose bodies remain on the shore of Lake Poopó. It is very difficult to quantify the number of deaths, but some community believe that would exceed 500 and may even be more than 1,000 deceased animals.
It is expected that the official report presented by the Government on Tuesday, all doubts are dispelled and can undertake an action plan to prevent future disasters.
Courtesy of La Patria