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46 Juvenile Seabirds Found Dead On Gulf Coast Beaches

Terry Foote (Wikimedia Commons)
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Dozens of juvenile seabirds called black skimmers have been found dead along Gulf Coast beaches over the past six weeks.

The Tampa Bay Times reports volunteers who have been monitoring the die-off suspect the dumping of more than 1 million gallons of municipal sewage into Boca Ciega Bay has something to do with it. Forty-six birds have been found dead.

Heavy rains in August prompted a number of Pinellas County cities to dump sewage into area waterways.

Experts say the cause of death could be salmonella, a virus or even red tide. Each of those potential causes could be related to the dumping of sewage.

Lorraine Margeson of the Florida Shorebird Alliance found the first bird carcass Aug. 12 said another juvenile skimmer was found dead on Tuesday.