In late May, DNR started receiving reports of sick and dying songbirds from Monroe County with neurological signs, eye swelling, and crusty discharge around the eyes.
Reports of sick and dying birds now include 53 counties, including: Allen, Bartholomew, Benton, Boone, Brown, Carroll, Cass, Clark, Clinton, Decatur, Delaware, Elkhart, Fayette, Floyd, Gibson, Grant, Greene, Hamilton, Hancock, Harrison, Hendricks, Henry, Howard, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Johnson, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Lake, LaPorte, Lawrence, Madison, Marion, Monroe, Morgan, Newton, Ohio, Orange, Parke, Porter, Pulaski, Putnam, Randolph, Shelby, Starke, St. Joseph, Tippecanoe, Union, Vanderburgh, Warrick, Washington, Whitley.
The following species are principally affected: blue jay, American robin, common grackle, starling, northern cardinal, brown-headed cowbird.
DNR staff have collected samples and submitted them to the Indiana Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory. Final laboratory diagnostic results are pending – the cause or transmission is currently unknown and still under investigation.
All birds have tested negative for avian influenza, West Nile virus, and other flaviviruses, Salmonella and Chlamydia (bacterial pathogens), Newcastle disease virus and other paramyxoviruses, herpesviruses and poxviruses, and Trichomonas parasites. Other diagnostic tests are ongoing.
As the investigation continues, the DNR recommends all Hoosiers remove their birdfeeders, including those for hummingbirds, statewide.
Source: DNR