Hundreds of dead and injured birds discovered along the shores of Georgian Bay in Ontario

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Barrie, Ont. –

Disclaimer: Some people may find the details of this story disturbing.

An investigation is underway after hundreds of dead and injured birds washed up on the shores of southern Georgian Bay.

The Shades of Hope Wildlife Refuge is involved in the survey which spans the beaches of Collingwood, Midland and Tiny Township.

Experts at the shelter say the birds are fish eaters and likely consumed bacteria from the fish, which eventually led to a form of bird botulism developing.

Some of the birds were seen struggling along the shoreline and the rescue organization says it is trying to save as many as possible.

A dead bird is found on the shore of Wasaga Beach, Ontario. (Provided)

The rescue organization tries to save as many birds as possible.

“A lot of them are arctic birds, and there are loons, grebes and so many, many species that are already facing so much trouble,” Shades of Hope director Cathy Stockman said.

“To potentially kill thousands of these birds is just beyond that,” she added.

Ten years ago, nearly 6,000 birds washed up on the shores. Authorities believed botulism was to blame in the case.

Botulism is a serious illness caused by toxins that can lead to breathing difficulties, paralysis and death.

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