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Rare birds poisoned by toxic pesticide

By Li Xiang (Global Times)

08:25, November 19, 2012

Police in North China's Tianjin Municipality confirmed that 20 rare birds were found dead and another 13 poisoned in the city's wetlands, after the area was tainted by highly-toxic pesticide, adding that the surviving birds were not in critical condition.

The birds, oriental white storks, which are listed under China's highest level of animal protection, had been poisoned along their migratory route when stopping at the city's Beidagang Wetland Nature Reserve.

Police said the water was confirmed to have contained furadan, one of the most toxic carbamate pesticides.

The remains and poisoned birds were discovered after an amateur photographer found the dead body of a stork on November 11, and other kinds of birds have also been found dead.

Local authorities are diluting the tainted water and looking for the sources of the pesticide.

Only 2,500 to 3,000 oriental white storks currently exist in the country. The species, which usually reproduces in northeastern China, migrate south for winter, and Beidagang is an important habitat along their migratory route.

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