An outbreak of salmonellosis was reported in songbirds in the Northeast in January, 1998. It has since afflicted birds in the Midwest as well. As of the end of March, confirmed cases had been reported in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Wisconsin. Similar but unconfirmed cases have been reported in Connecticut, Ohio, Maine and Massachusetts.
Salmonellosis, caused by the salmonella bacteria, is often fatal to the birds. It is spread through feces which can contaminate feeders, the ground under the feeders, and sources of water. While it has not been reported in our area, the best defense is to keep bird feeding areas clean
Project Feederwatch has a guide
to diseases seen in birds at feeeders.
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