At least 750 pelicans found dead in the Djoudj ornithological reserve, near the border with Mauritania, said the director of Senegal’s parks.
Some 750 pelicans have been found dead at a UNESCO World Heritage site in northern Senegal that provides refuge for millions of migratory birds, the country’s director of parks said.
Forest rangers found the pelicans on January 23 at the Djoudj Bird Sanctuary, an isolated pocket of wetland near the border with Mauritania and a resting place for birds crossing the Sahara Desert in Africa. ‘West every year.
An unverified video posted to local media showed hundreds of muddy pelican carcasses strewn across a beach, their feathers a shade darker than their normal white.
“We have taken samples for screening and we hope to know in the near future what caused the death of the pelicans,” Bocar Thiam, director of parks in Senegal, said in an interview.
The sanctuary is a staging area for around 350 species of birds, but only pelicans have been found dead, he said. Of those killed, 740 were young people and 10 were adults.
Authorities closed the park and ordered the cremation of dead birds as a precaution.
This month, Senegal reported an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza in a poultry farm in the Thiès region, about 193 kilometers to the south, resulting in the culling of around 100,000 chickens.