French find suspicious dead wild boars on their coast
The death of 36 wild boars near Morieux on France’s northwestern coast so far has remained a mystery. The animals were found at the end of July and first tests so far are inconclusive.
Press agency Reuters reported that environmentalists had suggested that toxic hydrogen sulfide gas emitted by the rotting seaweed had poisoned the wild boars in the Cotes d’Armor region of Brittany.
The algae population along France’s coastline may have got a boost by nitrates pollution in rivers from fertilisers used in intensive farming, ecologists claim.
Tests on the bodies of six wild boars found widely ranging traces of the gas and one carcass showed no signs of the gas at all. A spokesman for the local prefecture said, “With such a wide difference in the values, we cannot reach any conclusion.”
The beach near the town of Morieux where most of the animals were found in late July has been closed to the public.
Authorities now take into account a range of possibilities for the mysterious deaths, such as deliberate poisoning of the animals.
The Sarkozy government launched a plan to fight against the spread of seaweed along the coast in 2009 after an asphyxiated horse found in Cotes-d’Armor was discovered to have a large amount of hydrogen sulfide in its body.