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International News: Experts say cause of deaths of hundreds of birds in Mexico linked to El Niño, not avian flu

Posted: Thursday, June 15, 2023. 3:09 pm CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: Earlier this year, hundreds of birds were found dead along Mexico’s Pacific coast.

Initially, experts said that it was due to avian flu.

However, today the Mexican Government said that the warming Pacific ocean currents associated with El Niño, not bird flu, were responsible for the mass die-off.

According to the Associated Press, Mexico’s Agriculture Department conducted tests on the dead birds.

Those tests revealed that the birds died of starvation, not flu.

The warming surface water in the Pacific caused by El Niño can drive fish into deeper, cooler water, making it harder for birds to find food.

“According to autopsies carried out by veterinarians and specialized biologists, it was found that the animals died of starvation. The most probable cause of this epidemiological event is the warming of the waters of the Pacific due to the El Niño meteorological effect, which causes fish to seek deeper, colder waters, preventing sea birds from catching food,” a statement from the agriculture department said.

El Niño is a natural and occasional weather phenomenon that causes warming of part of the Pacific that shifts weather patterns across the globe.

 

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