Hoosiers living in 76 counties can resume feeding birds, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources said Monday, but several others are asked to continue to hold off.
Residents in Whitley, Allen and St. Joseph Counties continue to refrain from feeding birds.
The Indiana DNR asked all Hoosiers to stop feeding birds on June 25 to slow the spread of a still-undetermined illness that is killing birds across the state.
DNR biologists believe there to be more than 500 cases of sick birds in 72 counties involve very specific symptoms including crusty eyes, eye discharge, and/or neurological issues.
Indiana DNR says it appears the bird illness is consistently affecting specific areas. There is no threat to people, the population of specific bird species, or to the overall population of birds in Indiana.
If you live in a county where bird feeding can resume, you should clean suet and seed feeders at least once every two weeks by scrubbing them with soap and water, followed by a short soak in a 10% bleach solution. They should be thoroughly rinsed and dried before being filled with birdseed. Hummingbird feeders should be cleaned at least once a week with a 10% bleach solution and rinsed thoroughly.
The USGS National Wildlife Health Center’s avian disease experts are working to determine the cause of the disease outbreak.