Thousands of guillemots found dead along the coasts of England and Scotland

Thousands of seabirds have been found dead along the coasts of northeast England and Scotland. The UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology is investigating the cause of the deaths and has said that the majority of the birds were guillemots.

Various birdwatchers have reported hundreds of dead animals washing up on beaches, while hundreds more have been seen floating at sea. 

Dr Francis Daunt, an ecologist with the CEH, was quoted by The Independent as saying, “The birds are emaciated – they are little more than skin and bone with many half their usual weight which is catastrophically low”.

He further said that one possible cause of the suffering was poisoning from algal blooms, but others have said climate change is almost certainly a key factor.

Keith Marley, who runs New Arc wildlife rescue centre in Aberdeenshire said, “I have no doubt this is related to climate change”. 

“It’s been confirmed it’s not bird flu and you don’t get toxic incidents effecting an area this big so you have to look at the conditions and the obvious conclusion is changes to sea water temperatures are having an impact.

“It is the younger birds we are seeing mostly dying and they are the ones that cannot dive as deep to reach their prey so that would appear to be the issue.”

Source – WION