Colorado Parks Officials Monitoring Birds for Lethal 'Mysterious Disease'


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials are monitoring the state's bird population after a "mysterious disease" has killed many in the mid-Atlantic region.

Officials said there have been no confirmed cases of the disease in Colorado so far but that they are on the lookout for birds that are sick or have died with swollen eyes, blindness and signs of neurologic impairment, according to a news release.

Anyone who sees a bird suffering from these symptoms is urged to contact Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

The cause of the disease is unknown.

Most of the birds impacted in the mid-Atlantic regions are blue jays, grackles, European starlings and the American robin.

In Colorado, house finches can be infected by a bacteria that causes similar symptoms called finch conjunctivitis. However, this disease has not been reported in other birds.

The disease commonly is spread from bird feeders or baths, officials said.

Park officials are reminding Coloradans to regularly clean bird feeders and baths with a 10% bleach solution, rinsing with water and removing all debris from the objects.

"Please take down feeders if you notice sick or dying birds," officials said in the release.