Jan 21, 2011

Hundreds of birds poisoned by USDA in South Dakota

It's happened in places like Louisiana, Arkansas and Kentucky. Hundreds of birds mysteriously found dead.

Folks in Yankton, South Dakota, thought they were being added to the list after hundreds of dead birds were found there on Monday.

Turns out the unpleasant feathered discovery has a solid explanation. They were poisoned.

Some had thought 200 starlings found dead in Yankton's Riverside park had frozen to death.

But they were actually poisoned on purpose, by the US Department of Agriculture.

The USDA said a local farmer had been having troubles with about 5,000 starlings soiling his feed meal.

UDSA officials say because of health concerns for the farmer's animals and staff they decided to kill the birds.

They used a bait laced with the poison DRC-1339. The USDA says the birds ate the bait then flew back to Yankton and died.