Loading articles...

Cleanup of dead birds on Georgian Bay to begin Monday

Dead birds line a portion of Allenwood Beach just outside of Wasaga Beach, Ont., on Oct. 22, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Benjamin Ricetto.

Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources will have crews out Monday picking up thousands of dead birds that have washed ashore along beaches on Georgian Bay.

Initial estimates pegged the number of dead water fowl as high as 6,000.

Ministry spokesman John Cooper says staff will also be in the area north of Wasaga Beach on Monday trying to get a more exact count.

Cooper says testing is being done to confirm the cause of the deaths, which he says are not uncommon on the Great Lakes at this time of year.

He says botulism has proven to be the cause of similar occurrences in the past — fish ingest botulism when feeding on the lake bottom and the birds eat the contaminated fish.

The government clean-up will focus on a large provincial park on the shores of Georgian Bay.