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WNY's Bitter Cold Winter Causes Starvation for Ducks

In  a typical winter, Western New York is a favorite haven for hundreds of thousands of water birds. 

But this season's bitterly cold weather has left most of Lake Erie, and about 45 percent of Lake Ontario covered with ice.

The State Department of Environmental Conservation says hundreds of ducks have died from starvation because they can't reach the fish in the water.

Click on the audio link above to hear a conversation with wildlife rehabilitator Marianne Hites from Messinger Woods Wildlife Care and Education Center in Erie County.

Her organization has cared for hundreds of starving ducks that have been rehabilitated and released into the Finger Lakes region where the water is open and the fish are plentiful.

Hites notes that it is not legal to keep a duck, injured or otherwise, for more than 24 hours. If you find one, she says you should call the DEC. The number in our region is 226-2466.

Beth Adams joined WXXI as host of Morning Edition in 2012 after a more than two-decade radio career. She was the longtime host of the WHAM Morning News in Rochester. Her career also took her from radio stations in Elmira, New York, to Miami, Florida.