What happened to the birds?

Every day brings something new to worry about. Today the Chronicle tells us that increasing numbers of dead birds are being washed up on the shores of Richardson Bay, which is part of San Francisco Bay. No one knows why the sudden upsurge in the number of dead birds, several species are represented and none of them look injured. We can’t help worrying about whether there is some link between the sewer leak into the bay last week and this increase in bird corpses. There may be no tie-in, perhaps there is a shortage of food or some other unknown source. The birds are being preserved and their bodies will be analyzed by toxicologists in an attempt to discover the cause of death. Perhaps we should have a TV show concentrating on scientists who investigate the reasons for wildlife deaths. Often these are more important to us than the fictional crimes we watch night after night on the tube–probably more interesting to watch too.

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