Pigeons mysteriously die in Conwy Valley


An investigation has been launched after locals reported finding numerous dead Feral Pigeons in Conwy during recent weeks.

Garry Lloyd Jones has found several dead birds around Llanrwst over the last fortnight, with a further three in his garden over the weekend. Pondering whether the cause could be poison or avian flu, Mr Jones posed the question on Facebook. In response, other people mentioned seeing dead pigeons around the town, including by the river and in a Trefriw garden.

Mr Jones, also the former mayor of Llanrwst, told NorthWalesLive: "I found another dead pigeon on top of a bin in town. It really is very odd, and let's hope it's not poison or – perhaps even worse – avian flu.

"I feed the pigeons every day and the birds are in a good condition. There's usually around 80 to 100 of them, but yesterday only around 13 to 14 turned up."

Several of the carcasses are due to be checked for signs of avian influenza (Martin Webb).

The incident has been reported to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and Conwy Council, while two have stored in a freezer to allow Defra to inspect them for signs of the virus. At present, the department has no alerts for avian flu affecting wild birds in Wales.

A Defra spokesman said: "Where dead or sick wild birds are reported to the Defra helpline, we will investigate as necessary as part of our disease surveillance work. Results for dead wild birds that have tested positive for avian influenza are routinely published."

Earlier this summer, bird flu was thought to be one of the factors behind a disastrous breeding season for Great Skua across Shetland.