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Empire – More than two dozen common loons have been found dead at a beach in northern Michigan.

Good Harbor Bay beach is at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Leelanau County. Officials believe the birds were likely killed by Type E botulism and washed ashore this week.

Botulism has been linked to more than 80,000 bird deaths around the Great Lakes since 1999. Experts at Michigan Sea Grant believe the birds could have eaten fish that were carrying the toxin.

People are urged to avoid touching a dead bird on a Great Lakes beach. Keep pets away, too.

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