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The City of Mesquite has confirmed that more than 50 duck deaths at various Mesquite parks during the past few weeks is being caused by a duck virus also known as Duck Enteritis Virus or commonly referred to as a “duck plague.” The public is not at risk, as the disease is shared only between ducks and other waterfowl. This disease will run its course among the ducks, as there are no effective treatments available.
If the public is witness to any distressed animal at City parks, they are asked to contact the City using its 24-hour Utility Dispatch phone number 972-216-6278. For health and safety precautions, the City reminds the public not to handle any injured or deceased wildlife at any park, at any time.
Samples of deceased ducks from City Lake Park were sent to the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic laboratory for testing. The report indicated the presence of the virus. The virus is typically wide spread and the City anticipates additional loss of ducks over the next few weeks.
Public health professionals, including the National Wildlife Health Center, confirm this type of waterfowl disease creates no evidence of human risk. Duck plague, which affects only ducks, geese and swans, is caused by a virus. Transmission of the virus between the animals can occur through direct contact with affected birds. Once exposed, birds can appear healthy, but can still have the virus. The virus can live for weeks under certain conditions. This is usually seen in pond settings during the April to June breeding season.
The City of Mesquite thanks the public for their assistance on this issue and for keeping the parks safe, clean and fun for the entire community.