June 25, 2021(updated 6/30/21)
Indiana Audubon is urging it’s members and bird enthusiasts to assist with the DNR’s guidelines regarding the current unknown bird illness that is affecting birds statewide. To date there are an estimated 200 valid reports of this condition in birds around the state. Reports of sick and dying birds now include 50 counties, including: Allen, Bartholomew, Benton, Boone, Brown, Carroll, Cass, Clark, Clinton, Decatur, Delaware, Elkhart, Fayette, Floyd, Gibson, 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, Shelby, Starke, St. Joseph, Tippecanoe, Union, Vanderburgh, Washington, Whitley (6/30/21).
Current guidance as of the latest update is to recommend all Hoosiers remove their songbird feeders and bird baths statewide. (as of 6/26/21)
Though many species of songbirds are being affected, corvids, such as blue jays and grackles seem to be the most prevalent reported species. Other species have included American Robin, Northern Cardinal, and European Starling. Symptoms include eye swelling, crusty eye and blindness, as well as neurological disorders, including defaulting standing or using muscles.
Individuals should keep themselves and their pets away from sick or dead birds as a precaution as we learn more about this illness. You can report sick or dead birds showing the above symptoms through the DNR’s wildlife Reporting Tool. Licensed wildlife rehabbers can be found on the Indiana Audubon Sick and Injured Bird Page.
Learn more about Indiana Audubon and our mission by becoming a member at IndianaAudubon.org/membership.