Parasites kill 80 ducks in Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool

A water-borne parasite in the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool has killed around 80 ducks since late May, according to the National Park Service.

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Snails that live in the pool caused "high levels of parasites," the U.S. Geological Survey's National Wildlife Health Center said.

The contaminated water only posed a risk to humans if there was prolonged contact with the water, like swimming or wading. The parasite could cause an allergic reaction resulting in swimmer’s itch or a skin rash, the agency said.

Chemical treatments won't fix the problem, so the NPS has started draining the pool for cleaning.

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It takes two days to fully drain the pool before cleaning can begin. The NPS said it expects the iconic landmark and popular tourist destination to reopen June 19.

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