As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Mid-Michigan birds contaminated with DDT


Posted: May 27, 2014 10:19 PM GDT
Updated: May 27, 2014 10:26 PM GDT
Posted By Brianna Owczarzak - email
By Craig McMorris, TV5 Anchor/Reporter

A Mid-Michigan community that was the site of the costliest Environmental Protection Agency cleanup in history once again has the attention of environmentalists.

Volunteers are being trained on how to deal with birds contaminated with the pesticide DDT. 

Michigan State University wildlife toxicology professor Matt Zwiernik outlined to a couple of volunteers what they need to do when they come across dead birds in St. Louis. 

Last year some robins and other birds found in residential yards near the buried Velsicol Chemical plant site died from DDT poisoning. They think the DDT originated from that plant.

"We collected 28 birds and I think 27 of them had concentrations in their brains greater than a 100 [parts per million] which is considered the threshold for adverse effects," Zwiernik said.

Now the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality wants to gather as many dead birds as possible.

The volunteers are vital. They need to get out and find these dead birds before predators get a hold of them.

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