WASHINGTON — When Trump talked about “Draining the Swamp,” this probably wasn’t what he meant.
A lethal water-borne parasite in the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool has left 80 ducks dead, authorities said.
The National Park Service said it would drain the pool after detecting the toxic condition.
The service said that on May 20 and 21, rangers discovered dozens of dead ducks and ducklings in and around the poll. An investigation yielded that a high level of a parasite that grows in snails that live in the pond was the likely cause.
Officials say the situation cannot be treated chemically and requires that the pool be completely emptied of water and cleaned.
Humans who come in contact with the parasite are at low risk for any trouble but could develop “swimmer’s itch,” an allergic reaction in the form of a skin rash. The condition is not contagious and rarely requires medical treatment.
The park service say the risk of contracting it at the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool is extremely low, as it is only contracted by sustained contact with affected water, such as by swimming or wading.
Meanwhile, officials say it will take approximately eight days to drain, clean and refill the pond. They say they will aggressively monitor the water for the parasite afterwards.