SHOCKING: 15 native birds found dead after poison attack
DEATH by poison was the fate of 15 satin bowerbirds found recently at Modanville, near Lismore.
The Environment Protection Authority North Coast regional operations manager Benjamin Lewin said investigations conducted by North Coast Local Land Services confirmed that the bird deaths were caused by the banned insecticide fenthion.
Mr Lewin said as the responsible regulator for pesticide use, the EPA is exploring the possibility that the birds may have been deliberately targeted, as no other bird species is known to have been impacted.
Satin bowerbirds are a protected native species, and Mr Lewin said the killing of native birds, whether through intentional or reckless pesticide misuse, was a serious offence.
"We are encouraging anyone with information on these deaths, or anyone who may have seen some activity that could be related to this illegal baiting, to contact the EPA as soon as possible," Mr Lewin said.
Fenthion, which was banned from use in 2014 with a phase out period of one year, is a broad-spectrum organophosphorus insecticide.
Fenthion is extremely toxic to birds and substantial penalties exist for the possession and use of fenthion.
Historically the chemical was widely used in the past for insect control on a broad range of fruit crops and for external parasite control on livestock.
The EPA is seeking information from members of the public
If you have information, phone the EPA Environment Line on 131 555.
For more information on both permitted and banned pesticides visit https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/your-environment/pesticides/pesticides-nsw-overview.