Concern over dead seabirds along Amble coastline
Concern has been voiced over dozens of dead seabirds found along the coastline from Amble to Druridge Bay.
The birds, mostly gannets so far, are feared to have contracted a new variant of Avian Flu, which is proving very infectious and fatal. The birds are succumbing to the disease within 28 hours, but the disease itself can survive for a month out of the birds’ body or even in freezing lakes.
Hundreds of dead and dying birds have been reported along the shore and cliffs in Scotland, and in the past few days DEFRA has removed several dead gannets from Bass Rock for testing.
While filming BBC Springwatch at Hauxley Nature Reserve, presenter Megan McCubbin remarked on the dead birds.
“I was filming just on the beach and behind me is the wonderful Coquet Island with a beautiful colony of seabirds on it, but literally 10m from my feet was a dead gannet. I walked on another 10m, there was another dead gannet and if I’d continued along that beach I’m sure I would have found a lot more.”
“It’s really a horrible sight, it makes me incredibly sad to see it. And in this area in the last week there’s been notification of 16 gannets that have been found along Druridge Bay, and potentially many more to come in the breeding season.”
Members of the public are being asked to contact DEFRA to report dead seabirds. The number is: 03459 335577. Do not touch the birds and please keep dogs away from them.
For removal of dead birds, please contact Northumberland County Council on: 0345 600640. Using an app such as what3words is a useful tool to use when describing a location.