- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 30, 2015

FERNDALE, Wash. (AP) - The state Department of Ecology has fined a livestock owner $12,000 for polluting waterways with manure north of Bellingham.

Ecology officials fined Jim and Victoria Snydar last week for polluting waterways near Ferndale that flow into California Creek in the Drayton Harbor watershed.

The penalty cites lack of adequate covered manure storage, improper manure spreading, and accumulations of manure in pastures and areas that slope to water bodies, as factors that led to discharges.

Ecology officials said in a news release that water samples taken downstream of the property on one occasion showed polluted water 85 times greater than the state limit.

Bacteria from manure pollution can pose a risk to human health, through direct contact or by eating contaminated shellfish.

Penalties from the Department of Ecology may be appealed.

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