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Mining company looking for new ideas to keep birds off toxic waters in Butte’s Berkeley Pit

In this Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016, photo, snow geese fly along the bank of the Berkeley Pit’s toxic waters, in Butte, Mont. (Walter Hinick / Associated Press)
In this Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016, photo, snow geese fly along the bank of the Berkeley Pit’s toxic waters, in Butte, Mont. (Walter Hinick / Associated Press)
Associated Press

BUTTE, Mont. – A Montana mining company plans to reach out to bird experts for ideas about how to keep geese off a former open pit copper mine that is now a superfund site.

The Montana Standard reports that Montana Resources’ manager of environmental affairs, Mark Thompson, said Friday that the company wants to change how it deals with the birds at the Berkeley Pit. Thousands of migrating snow geese died after landing on and consuming toxic Berkeley Pit water in late November.

The company plans to start increasing its bird observation on March 1 to prepare for the annual migration. It is forming an advisory council of experts but it’s not yet clear who will be on it.

The current plan calls for using noisemakers to scare flocks of birds away from the water.

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