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How I Miss Them!

A mysterious bird disease is affecting the Southern and Mid-Atlantic states.

Birdbaths in my yard, usually a focal point for visiting birds, have been turned over at the urging of Massachusetts Wildlife officials. Although not yet reported in Massachusetts, a mysterious bird disease has affected many Southern and Mid-Atlantic states. Since late May there have been numerous reports of dying birds with swollen eyes and crusty discharge, as well as neurological problems. In lieu of the bright colors and uplifting energy our feathered friends provide, I offer these digitally altered photos, hoping the birds will be back flitting around my yard soon, and in good health.

About the author jmankowsky

This photo blog features the seasonal changes in nature observed in my own backyard and a variety of local environments. The Wachusett Meadow Audubon Sanctuary in Princeton, MA is often highlighted as a model for the positive effects a small nature preserve can have on the larger environment and the local community. Local sites of historical, cultural and recreational interest are spotlighted as well. All photographs were taken by me. Thank you so much for visiting.

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11 Comments

  1. How sad that birds dying of a mysterious disease.
    I hope also that soon birds will return to your back yard and in good health.
    I don’t know how to alter photographs but I love what you did. You created a wonderful art!!!

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    1. Thank you, Kaya. We are hoping to have the birds back soon.
      The photos are altered by fooling around with light and dark and color filters on the computer to change them up. It is really interesting to see the effects you can get.
      Best,
      Julie

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  2. Such a loss! Hope next year the bird baths can come back out. We still have ours out, but if there is even a hint of a problem, down they will come.

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  3. The news from some of the Atlantic states about the diseased and dying birds has been very disheartening. I know other states are watching closely and I hope whatever causes the problem won’t continue to spread. I’m sorry you are not able to feed and water your feathered friends. It would make me sad, too, if I had to stop. Let’s hope the cause can be found and treated!

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    1. We had four birdbaths around the yard, and it was always so entertaining to watch them. Birds, like people, seem to have quite varied personalities!
      I read today that scientists are thinking that possibly the birds were infected by eating cicadas that were in the south in such numbers this year. If that is true, then the birds should be safe here in Massachusetts, at least.

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      1. I hope we will get answers soon and you can fill your birdbaths again!
        Have a pleasant weekend.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. This is not good news. I’m saddened to hear it. I hope it’s not a pandemic among birds! 🤔

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    1. Fingers crossed–it has not reached Massachusetts yet.
      Thanks for visiting my page!

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  5. This is very, very sad and I hope they are able to identify the disease soon, what might cause it and it proves to be self-limiting. One of the many concerns related to climate change is the potential for unpredictable diseases as conditions alter beyond the tolerance levels for many species.
    I do hope that conditions improve for birdlife soon.

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    1. Thank you so much. It is so very quiet in the yard! The catbirds, jays, tufted titmice and robins aren’t around. (They were the prime bath-takers in the bird baths.) Fingers crossed–there are still no problems in Massachusetts yet.
      -Julie

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      1. Fingers crossed indeed. Sending best wishes.

        Liked by 1 person

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