Dead birds are discovered at Wistlandpound Reservoir near Blackmoor Gate.

INVESTIGATIONS are under way after around 100 dead seagulls were found in the water at Wistlandpound Reservoir near Combe Martin.

The reservoir at Blackmoor Gate supplies drinking water to several North Devon communities. South West Water has said the birds had been found in the untreated section of the lake.

It said it had received reports of dead gulls from several of its sites including Wimbleball on Exmoor and Crowdy in Cornwall.

A spokesperson said two seagulls had been sent to the Environment Agency to test for disease: “We have also carried out water quality tests at the reservoirs and algae levels are low.

“We believe this is a phenomenon of the current environmental conditions and not anything to do with our reservoirs.

“We’d like to reassure our customers in North Devon that water from all our reservoirs is treated to the highest standards at a water treatment works before it reaches their homes.”

The outward bound centre Calvert Trust Exmoor is based near the reservoir and uses it for water sports such as sailing. Robb Lott at the centre said activities were continuing as normal.

“The information we were given is they think its something to do with seagulls ingesting lots of flying ants,” he said.

“We are monitoring the situation and it has not stopped our activities in any way.”