By Ada Carr
Hurricane Irma destroyed all of the active nests of the endangered Everglade Snail Kite.
The loss caused the birds’ breeding season to end on an even worse note, according to officials.
The Everglade Snail Kite is one of the species used to indicate the health of the Greater Everglades Ecosystem.
Scientists in Florida say all of the nests of an endangered species of bird were lost on Lake Okeechobee after deadly Hurricane Irma battered parts of the state.
According to a release from Audubon Florida, all 44 active nests of the Everglade Snail Kite were wiped out by the storm. While many adult and juvenile birds survived, eggs and flightless baby birds in the nests did not make it.
Irma was a powerful storm that left more than 70 dead. It caused coastal surge flooding, torrential rainfall and damaging winds stretching from the northern Leeward Islands to the Southeast U.S.
Before the storm, researchers had been watching the roughly 130 nests of the birds, which can only found in Florida, particularly around Lake Okeechobee. The loss caused the birds’ breeding season to end “on an even worse note,” according to the release.