Avian Cholera may be blamed for Death of 2,000 Snow Geese

Avian Cholera may be blamed for Death of 2,000 Snow Geese

At least 2,000 snow geese have been found dead in Idaho. On Wednesday, wildlife managers said that the geese were migrating to nesting grounds on the northern coast of Alaska.

Idaho Department of Fish and Game spokesman Gregg Losinski said that many workers from the agency and volunteers spent their weekend in retrieving and burning up carcasses of snow geese found near water bodies and a wildlife management area in the eastern part of the state.

Authorities concerned think that avian cholera is the culprit behind the deaths. Losinski said that the most shocking thing was geese just fell out of the sky.

Investigation is on, said Losinski. Biologists are waiting for the lab results to come and it can be confirmed that the birds have died because of the avian cholera, highly contagious disease. The disease takes place due to bacteria capable of surviving in soil and water for up to four months.

It is believed that avian cholera is the culprit because of the way the birds died. Losinski affirmed that humans face a small risk of contracting the disease. But the wildlife faces the immediate threat due to the presence of contaminated carcasses.

Around 20 bald geese were also seen near the place where snow geese bodies were present. Losinski said that it is unclear for now if the eagles were infected or they would carry the ailment elsewhere.

For now, it is unknown from where the geese contracted avian cholera. Losinski said it is not the first time that such an outbreak has taken place. These outbreaks affect the migrating snow geese in Idaho at times in America and at other places.

Avian cholera is considered to be the most important infectious disease that affects wild waterfowl in North America.