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Mass mortalities in gulls associated with eating livestock fodder
  1. Robert Hogg1,
  2. Kate Whitaker1 and
  3. J. Paul Duff2
  1. 1 VLA - Preston, Barton Hall, Garstang Road, Preston, Lancashire PR3 5HE
  2. 2 VLA - Penrith, Merrythought, Penrith, Cumbria CA11 9RR

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AS part of the Defra-supported Great Britain Wildlife Disease Surveillance Partnership, the Veterinary Laboratories Agency (VLA) Diseases of Wildlife Scheme undertakes investigations into unusual wildlife mortality incidents. VLA - Preston has dealt with two incidents involving gulls that died as a result of ingesting dried sugar beet pulp. A similar incident has also been investigated in Cumbria.

In February 2006, a total of 23 gull carcases were received at VLA - Preston. Approximately 30, including black-headed gulls (Larus ridibundus), common gulls (Larus canus) and herring gulls (Larus argentatus), had been found dead over a three-day period at a reservoir in north-west England. Those seen alive were distressed and …

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