WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A group of homeowners in West Palm Beach is raising concerns after finding dozens of dead ducks at a park, along with other wildlife struggling to survive.
Josh Gill walks the banks of the turning basin at Howard Park almost every day. He says the serene landscape recently turned somber.
“Now we come down here and it’s like a funeral. Everybody is sad, everybody is upset they’re all trying to figure out what is going on,” Gill said.
Questions are swirling around the park after the ducks died in the past few weeks.
“There were no ducklings to be found and then I started to see them dead on the banks of this turning basin and it was devastating,” said Jacqui Agostinelli, who also walks at the park every day.
“To have a whole flock like this decimated and other wildlife there’s fish that are dead along the side of the banks,” Gill said.
Gill and several others say they saw the city out spraying the non-native and invasive vegetation, and believe that could be the root of the problem.
“Explaining that to my 51/2 year-old son also is not an easy conversation to have that this could happen,” said Tim Saunders.
The city responded Wednesday telling WPTV in a statement:
“We are aware of a false and inaccurate claim that the City’s spraying near the Howard Park retention pond killed ducks. City watershed technicians are licensed by the state and use only state-approved products, which do not have any adverse impacts on ducks or other wildlife. Additionally, the city’s actions were reviewed by a state agency which found no reason for concern.”
“We’re not blaming somebody for these things we just want to be able to look at the problem and try to find some sort of solution for them,” Gill said.
The city also says they found a few dead ducks before that spraying happened.
Gill believes it could also stem from stagnant water in the basin, but an exact cause remains a mystery.