Despite hope that the state would have a full necropsy report by the end of August, Gulfport city manager Jim O'Reilly told the Gabber that the city had yet to receive any test results that could point towards a culprit in the as-of-yet-unsolved duck deaths on the dead ducks discovered at Tomlinson Park.
In late August, the city received reports of ducks struggling for survival at the retention pond. Police responded, finding one dead duck, one duck that died in an officer's arms, and another than expired en route to the emergency vet.
In all, nine ducks – three Pekins and six mallards – as well as one shorebird died in late August. The state suspects but cannot yet confirm either avian botulism or duck virus enteritis (DVE), also called the duck plague. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection also tested for evidence of poisoning.
The State told the Gabber not to expect any test results earlier than the end of last week; the results have yet to arrive as of press time.
The good news, O'Reilly says, is that while the city doesn't yet know what caused the deaths, they also have had no more reports on dead waterfowl or other wading shorebirds, although one city staffer sent the Gabber photos of moldy bread dumped by the pond last week.
"Up to this point, we have not received any concerns or complaints regarding ducks," O'Reilly said.
Gulfport officials continue to monitor the situation. If you see a dead duck or other bird, please contact the Florida
Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's bird mortality reporting hotline, available online at MyFWC.com/bird.