Every Bird Matters
news and views from international bird rescue

June 21, 2019

Port of Los Angeles Wildlife Impact Mitigation Project: June 24th Presentation

Russ Curtis

What: Port of Los Angeles Wildlife Impact Mitigation Project, a special presentation: Hosted by International Bird Rescue and the Los Angeles Wildlife Center.

When: Monday, June 24, 2019 at 7 PM – 9 PM

Where: The Plaza At Cabrillo Marina, 2965 Via Cabrillo Marina, San Pedro, California 90731 Map

Thanks to a generous grant from the Harbor Community Benefit Foundation (HCBF), International Bird Rescue has conducted a study on the impacts to wildlife in the Port of Los Angeles. The study will be presented to the public on Monday evening, June 24, 2019 at 7 PM. There will also be a panel discussion with local experts. Refreshments will be served.

The study was conducted to weigh the human-generated impacts on marine wildlife at the Port of Los Angeles operations. Bird Rescue focused on the waterbirds that wade, dive, feed, and reproduce there. There had been port environmental impact reports before, but no review of wildlife incidents stretching back so far historically, or cast a net so wide.

Part of the study’s findings include education and outreach efforts that involve simple, straight-forward, and practical ways to minimize human-animal impacts (aka “Urban Wildlife Conflicts”), correctly identify common and uncommon wildlife behaviors, recognize signs of distress, and provide easy, direct, convenient resources to contact when intervention might be required.

This San Pedro event is free and open to the public.

Background

Bird Rescue and Harbor Community Benefit Foundation have built a strong partnership over the past five years, with HCBF supporting an impactful summer research internship program for several years. This year, HCBF offered Bird Rescue an opportunity to study current and historic issues affecting wildlife in and around the Port of Los Angeles, and to suggest mitigation measures. The Project is also helping to identify opportunities for further improvements to the health and safety of both marine wildlife and people.

About International Bird Rescue: In 1971 after 800,000 gallons of crude oil spilled into the bay, concerned individuals led by a registered nurse named Alice Berkner jumped into action, bringing International Bird Rescue to life. We have always had to pave a road where there is none. Staff and volunteers work with tenacity alongside clients, partners, and the public to find solutions. Today, we research best practices at our crisis response hospitals in California and Alaska and share them worldwide. Our mission is to inspire people to act toward balance with the natural world by rescuing waterbirds in crisis. We dream of a world in which every person, every day, takes action to protect the natural home of wildlife and ourselves.

May 27, 2019

It’s Dinosaur Week at Bird Rescue!

Russ Curtis

Celebrating Baby Herons and Egrets – Modern-Day Dinosaurs!

The connection between the today’s birds and their ancient dinosaur ancestors was first suggested in 1860 with the discovery of the feathered dinosaur, Archaeopteryx, in Germany. Today, when we look at the baby herons and egrets in care at our wildlife centers, that relationship couldn’t be more obvious. From their shape and appearance to the sounds they make, there is no question that these birds are modern-day dinosaurs!

The week of May 27-31, 2019 we will be highlighting the baby dinosaurs that come into care each year and the challenges they face in the modern world. Whether it’s nesting in busy, urban areas or conflicts with people, vehicles, or domestic animals, these birds need our help!

As part of Dinosaur Week, we have two special ways that YOU can take action today to help us raise the hundreds of baby “dinosaurs” that will come to us this year!

Adopt one of these Dino Birds

Each year our wildlife centers take in hundreds of orphaned baby herons and egrets. All of this work is funded through generous donations from supporters like you! To help, you can symbolically adopt one of  baby birds: Adopt a Baby Black-crowned Night-Heron!

Buy a limited edition Dino Bird Rescue t-shirt

In celebration of Baby Dinosaur Week at Bird Rescue, we are releasing a limited edition International Dinosaur Rescue T-Shirt! This design will only be available to order between now and June 2nd–order yours today!

Also, to help celebrate this Dino week we are giving away special dinosaur bird rescue t-shirts. Three lucky winners will chosen this week. Enter to win here

May 10, 2019

This Spring We’re Rescuing Hundreds of Orphaned Ducklings!

Russ Curtis

Duckling in care with feathers contaminated with super glue. Photo by Jeanette Bates-International Bird Rescue

Each spring, hundreds of baby birds come into care at Bird Rescue. Human-wildlife conflicts are the primary causes of these admissions. As urban development continues, suitable nesting habitat decreases, bringing people and baby birds into contact.

Between our two California wildlife centers, this May we have over 200 ducklings already in care, including the little one pictured here that came in contaminated with super glue! Our team was able to remove enough of the glue to give the duckling full range of movement. To avoid putting the duckling through the stress of a rigorous wash process, we will wait for this patient to molt the contaminated down fluff naturally as its new feathers grow in over the coming weeks.

You can help protect baby birds in a variety of ways this season! Here are a few of our top suggestions:

  • Wait to trim your trees until nesting season is over (October – November)
  • If you see baby birds, give them space! Sometimes parents are nearby but are frightened of humans
  • Keep natural areas free from litter
  • Know when to rescue a baby bird, and when not to – Read some great tips from Audubon here.
  • Support your local wildlife rehabilitation organizations

If you would like to support Bird Rescue during baby bird season this year, consider symbolically adopting a duckling! Your donation will go a long way towards helping our orphaned patients grow up strong and healthy, and eventually return to the wild. Duckling adoptions can make a great birthday present or Mother’s Day gift too!

Your Duckling adoption comes with a downloadable certificate to honor that special loved one.

 

April 23, 2019

Celebrate 2019 Bird L.A. Day On May 4th With Us In San Pedro

Russ Curtis

You are invited to help International Bird Rescue celebrate 2019 Bird L.A. Day on May 4th at our Los Angeles Wildlife Center. We will have crafts, special presentations, a gift shop, and educational booths where you can learn more about the waterbirds that we care for and how you can take action to protect them. The event runs from 10 AM to 2 PM.

Joining us at our location in San Pedro will be our friends from Wild Birds Unlimited, Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy, Tree Care for Birds and Other Wildlife, Ánimo Leadership Charter High School, Angels Gate Cultural Center, 5 Gyres, Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, and the El Dorado Nature Center.

Starting at 11 AM, Bird Rescue will welcome our Executive Director JD Bergeron and local partners for presentations at the center. JD will share information about our programs including wildlife rehabilitation and oil spill response. Also the Marine Biology and Environmental Club from Amino High School will discuss plastic pollution’s impact on wildlife, and the Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy will share their bird focused programs including the cactus wren citizen science project.

We will also have art activities led by artists from the Angels Gate Cultural Center and a DIY activity and presentation on the Zero Waste Lifestyle with Chi Le and Maciej Lisiak.

A special wildlife watching evening sail is being offered by our friends at Lami Topsail from 5:00 – 7:30 PM with special discounts for Bird LA Day guests. Find more information and book tickets at https://www.lamitopsail.org/community-calendar/ or by calling 310-833-6055.

The History of Bird LA Day

Held every May, Bird LA Day celebrates the birds of Southern California and LA’s amazing biodiversity. Bird and nature-themed events are held throughout the greater Los Angeles area. The 6th Annual Bird LA Day shines the spotlight on nature, and reminds the world that Los Angeles is a lot more than just film, fashion and celebrities. The majority of events are family-friendly and free-of-charge.

See: Map of all Southern California Bird LA Day events

 

March 31, 2019

Albatross Adventures: Special Evening Hosted in a Very Special Community!

Russ Curtis

JD Bergeron, Executive Director of International Bird Rescue, shares his experiences volunteering on Midway Atoll with audience in Berkeley. Photo by Russ Curtis-International Bird Rescue

Bird Rescue was thrilled to host a special public evening event on March 28, 2019, in Berkeley, CA –the birthplace of our first wildlife center back the 1970s. Our Executive Director, JD Bergeron, shared a lively and inspiring presentation “Albatross Adventures: Finding Wisdom on Midway Atoll” about his experience as one of 18 individuals conducting the 2019 Nesting Albatross Census on Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge, which hosts the largest colony of Laysan Albatross on the planet.

Nesting Laysan Albatrosses on Midway Atoll. Photo by JD Bergeron-International Bird Rescue

This special evening was held at the David Brower Center and brought a unique opportunity for staff and volunteers to connect face-to-face with over 120 Bird Rescue friends and supporters. We visited with many familiar faces and heard memorable and heartwarming stories from former volunteers, oil-spill responders, neighbors and even friends of our founder Alice Berkner, who resided in Berkeley herself.

The beautiful Brower Center’s unique history as an advocate for the environmental movement made it a perfect location to share the story of this important wildlife refuge and essential nesting habitat.

JD Bergeron presented about Midway Atoll not only as a geopolitical and strategic hot spot, but also as a critically important habitat for several species of wildlife including the Laysan Albatross. Midway Atoll is home to the largest nesting colony on the planet and JD’s specific mission was to participate in the nesting count. He described the steps and tools necessary to achieve the massive undertaking and shared the final result of all their work – approximately 600,000 nests counted!

A very warm thank you to everyone who joined us for Albatross Adventures! We had a great time gathering with friends and supporters to celebrate our work and hearing your stories about why seabirds matter to you.

Also see: Midway Atoll: Seabird Sanctuary

March 25, 2019

New Upgrades, Predator Proofing Completed At Los Angeles Wildlife Center

Russ Curtis

Jo Joseph, Bird Rescue staff member, installs hardware cloth on a waterfowl enclosure at the L.A. wildlife center.

Major upgrades have been completed at our Los Angeles wildlife center thanks to the generous support of Marathon Petroleum Foundation!

Predator proofing had recently become a key issue at our L.A. wildlife center in San Pedro. As development has continued in the surrounding community, the presence of predatory species such as raccoons and rats in and around the center has increased significantly. In the spirit of being good stewards of our local ecosystem, our staff researched the best methods for preventing the mounting predator concerns. To protect both our patients and local wildlife, we opted to use exclusion methods that would prevent the need for trapping or extermination. Upgrades to the outdoor animal enclosures were designed to create a hard, protective barrier against predators on the outside while maintaining a soft, safe interior for our patients on the inside.

With the help of a generous grant from the Marathon Petroleum Foundation, these designs were finally able to come to fruition! Hardware cloth was applied to the exterior of our outdoor aviaries and enclosures to keep out any would-be intruders. In addition, aluminum flashing was attached to the top of the structures to prevent any animals from climbing on top of the aviaries. To keep our recovering patients protected from the heavy-duty surfaces of the aviaries, we applied new netting to provide a soft cushion for the birds inside.

The grant also included funding for the installation of a new washer and two dryers to help us keep up with constant flow of laundry through our facility. We are so grateful to the Marathon Petroleum Foundation for their support which has made these critical upgrades possible!

A Western Gull in the newly predator-proofed aviary.

Highlighted aviary improvements include inner netting and aluminum flashing on the outside caging to keep predators out of bird area.

 

March 25, 2019

Staff Spotlight: Sylvia Bauer

Russ Curtis

Sylvia Bauer

The Bird Rescue family welcomes our newest San Francisco Bay-Delta wildlife center clinic staff, Sylvia Bauer. For as long as she can remember, Sylvia has been keenly interested in animals and has taken measures to make the world a better place through studying and caring for them. Her passion became activated during her high school years in Elk Grove, CA, when she joined Future Farmers of America (FFA), specializing in hands-on work with poultry. She eventually earned an American Degree, the highest distinction for FFA members.

Sylvia then attended California Polytechnic, San Luis Obispo where she graduated in 2015 with a major in Animal Science and a minor in Poultry Management. As with many college-bound students interested in animals, at first, she thought she was aiming for a vet degree. Through other opportunities at Cal Poly, she discovered that she could interface with wildlife (and not just domestic or farm species). As Sylvia explains now, “My journey led me other places and now I am completely content not being a vet!”.

After college Sylvia took on several internships, including the San Diego Zoo Safari Park where she recalls falling in love with three animals in particular: an old Meerkat going grey around the muzzle, and a tiny African deer called a Dik-dik who gave her a little snort when she saw her coming. The most exciting opportunity for Sylvia though was working with the zoo’s new baby rhino named Chutti, whom she fed oversized bottles of food that the baby guzzled at an astounding rate. She also interned for a time at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, building research enclosures. She even had the opportunity to give reindeer vaccinations and study herd health.

Sylvia had never even heard of International Bird Rescue until 2018 when her aunt, a long-time donor to Bird Rescue, offered to bring Sylvia along to one of our public events. She was impressed by what she saw, but it wasn’t until she browsed the internet one day looking for a new full-time position that Bird Rescue came up again, this time with a job opening. She interviewed, and the rest is history and Sylvia has now been on-board with us for two months!

So far, her favorite part about coming to work is “when you show up for work and learn that a bird patient is NOT there – and you know it got released back to its wild home!” She also found that the most surprising thing about working with seabirds is, “the size of the birds when you’re actually handling them as opposed to when you’re out birding. For example, a Bufflehead is more compact than you think it might be. It’s a humbling moment when you’re getting to know birds on an intimate level, and it’s awesome to experience wildlife up close.”

Sylvia looks forward to becoming more deeply connected to the community of like-minded people who care about helping the environment and who are as passionate as she is about helping wildlife. Welcome Sylvia, we are thrilled and honored to have you in our Bird Rescue family!

March 21, 2019

Conquer the Bridge with team Yes We Peli-CAN!

Russ Curtis

The Bird Rescue 2018 runners team Yes We Peli-CAN!

Early bird registration is now open for Conquer the Bridge 2019. Join Bird Rescue team Yes We Peli-CAN! as we run/walk over the iconic Vincent Thomas Bridge to raise awareness about aquatic birds in the Los Angeles Port area and fundraise to support our work.

The Vincent Thomas Bridge

Last Year, our inaugural team drew in more than 40 participants from Bird Rescue staff, volunteers, friends, family and supporters. Together we raised more than $12,000 leading up to race day, far surpassing our $10,000 goal. Participants had a wonderful time joining in with the local community to take on this 8.5 K course while sharing their love of birds and nature.

This year, we look forward to once again Conquering the Bridge as Team Yes We Peli-CAN! and we would love to have you join us! The details for the 11th Annual Conquer the Bridge Race are as follows:

Date: Sept, 2, 2019
Location: 5th and Harbor Blvd in San Pedro, CA 90731
Start Time: 7:00 AM
Distance: 5.3 Miles (8.5 kilometers)

Here’s how you can join the team: Register through Active.com

Create an account and fill out your information
Select team Yes We Peli-CAN! And enter the password: pelican

• Process payment for the registration fee. Your team discount will be applied at checkout.

**Note: After your registration is complete, there is an option to join the Active Advantage program. You can simply click “No Thanks” if you do not wish to join.

Donate a minimum $20 team fee to International Bird Rescue

(This fee covers basic costs related to participation on the team, including your race day shirt)

• Look for an email from RaceTeamLA@bird-rescue.org with the International Bird Rescue Team participant form

For more detailed information, you can download a copy of our team packet HERE. If you have any questions, please email the team captain at RaceTeamLA@bird-rescue.org.

March 15, 2019

Update Two Crises: 2nd Team Deployed to South Africa, Rising Number of California Oiled Birds

Russ Curtis

An orphaned Lesser Flamingo chick is fed during South Africa waterbird response.

As two avian crises, on two continents, continues to unfold, International Bird Rescue is sending a new team to South Africa to support a large scale waterbird rescue. And at home in California, additional staff has been added to respond to rising numbers of oiled birds.

Bird Rescue is asking the public to help support these responses: DONATE NOW

This week Bird Rescue will add another response team, including our veterinarian, Dr. Rebecca Duerr, in South Africa as they care for an extraordinary number of orphaned Lesser Flamingo chicks. They will be assisting Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB)–one of our longtime partners– along with other wildlife organizations–is involved in this large-scale waterbird rescue. Read earlier blog post

Many of the Lesser Flamingos are beginning to show their signature pink color in their down feathers. Our team is already on the ground (watch this earlier video) and has helped hand feed the hungry birds. As of now the flamingos are learning to feed on there own in large outdoor pens.

Oiled Seabirds

In California, oiled bird intakes now stand at 183 since the beginning of 2019. At least 30 clean birds have been successfully released so far! Our team continues to work hard to stabilize these seabirds, oiled by naturally occurring petroleum, so they can move through the wash process.

You can see recently washed birds in outdoor pools on the live birdcam in Los Angeles! You’ll notice they spend a significant amount of time preening, which helps them regain their waterproofing.

Your support during this time of need is greatly appreciated! Join us to help birds in crisis in California and South Africa today!

If you would like to speak to someone directly about making a major gift through your trust or corporation, please call us at (510) 289-1472.

Cleaned of oil, Grebes and a Loon in the outdoor recovery pool at the Los Angeles Wildlife Center. Photo by Angie Trumbo/International Bird Rescue

March 6, 2019

Two Crises – Two Continents

Russ Curtis

A tiny Lesser Flamingo chick is among the thousands of birds dramatically rescued in South Africa. Photo ©SANCCOB

International Bird Rescue is responding to two simultaneous avian emergencies on opposite sides of the globe, and we need your support! Donate now

Over 150 oiled birds affected by natural seep off the coast have flooded our wildlife centers in Northern and Southern California since the beginning of this year, triggering an increase of staffing to crisis levels. Meanwhile, a team from Bird Rescue has just landed in South Africa to aid in the rescue of thousands of baby Lesser Flamingos. These birds were abandoned in their drought-stricken breeding grounds at the Kamfers Dam near Kimberley – about 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) from Cape Town.

Oiled by natural seep, a Western Grebe seabird gets a washing at our Los Angeles Wildlife Center in San Pedro, CA. Photo by Angie Trumbo/International Bird Rescue

Many of the rescued baby flamingos are in care at the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB), one of our longtime partners. We first worked with SANCCOB in Cape Town almost twenty five years ago, and their team has once again invited us to assist with the rehabilitation of waterbirds in crisis. We are more than happy to help, and want give a big thank you to the Dallas Zoo for being in the first wave of international responders for this incident and sponsoring our international flights.

In California, more oil contaminated birds continue to flow into care each week. We thank our partner organizations, especially the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network and SPCA of Monterey County for stabilizing and transferring many of these oiled birds to us. We also thank the Oiled Wildlife Care Network for partnering with us on many levels and generously supporting a portion of the cost for caring for these animals. You can read news coverage of our current oiled wildlife response on CBS NewsNBC Los Angeles, and the Orange County Register.

Please join us when so many seabirds need our help throughout the world. To support our response costs and the ongoing care of these birds, please consider making a donation today.

If you would like to speak to someone directly about making a major gift through your trust or corporation, please call us at (510) 289-1472.

March 2, 2019

Event: Albatross Adventures: Finding Wisdom on Midway Atoll – March 28 in Berkeley, CA

Russ Curtis

Learn more about seabirds in the Bay Area and throughout the world! Sign up now

This engaging evening on Thursday, March 28, 2019 in Berkeley, CA will feature Bird Rescue Executive Director JD Bergeron’s inspiring presentation about his recent journey to Midway Atoll, which hosts the largest albatross colony on the planet.

JD was one of only 18 individuals tasked with conducting the 2019 nesting albatross census, and he will tell you more about the experience and what it means for Bird Rescue and seabirds going forward.

6:45: guest check-in

7:00 – 8:30: multimedia presentation

Event location:

The David Brower Center
2150 Allston Way
Berkeley, CA 94704

While your tickets are complimentary, donations are always appreciated.

Reservations are required to attend. Adults only please.

Questions? Please call our office at (707) 207-0380 ext. 100

 

February 14, 2019

Seabirds Oiled By Natural Seep Along California Coast Flood Los Angeles Center

Russ Curtis

A Western Grebe oiled by natural seep is cleaned at the Los Angeles Wildlife Center. Photo: Bill Steinkamp

Updated 3/4/2019

Since the beginning of 2019, more than 150 oiled seabirds coated in natural seep have been found stranded on beaches up and down the coast of California, from San Mateo County to Orange County.

The rescued birds are being washed and rehabilitated at our Los Angeles wildlife center. They include mainly Western Grebes, Clark’s Grebes, Red-throated Loons, and Surf Scoters. This influx of contaminated patients is not unusual. Each year in the fall and winter months Bird Rescue experiences an “Oiled Bird Season” as migrating birds pass through naturally occurring oil seeps. Read NOAA information: Natural Oil Seeps in Southern California

Oiled Common Murre seabird will be stabilized with food, fluids and rest before being washed at the SF Bay-Delta Center. Photo by Cheryl Reynolds/International Bird Rescue

As a member organization of the Oiled Wildlife Care Network with a fully equipped state-of-the-art wash facility, Bird Rescue staff and volunteers are trained and ready to provide these patients with the specialized care that they need. While it is unfortunate any time a bird becomes oiled, these seasonal seep birds give us the chance to practice the techniques and procedures that would be used during a spill emergency. All animal care workers don appropriate personal protective equipment as they work to stabilize each oiled patient and eventually move them through wash, which is a long and taxing process for these birds. See cleaned birds on the live BirdCam

“One of the most important things that people should understand about caring for oiled wildlife is that the wash is just a small portion of the overall work that needs to be done in order to successfully rehabilitate and release these birds back into the wild,” said Julie Skoglund, Bird Rescue’s Operations Manager.

Once they are adequately hydrated and nourished, each bird takes about 30-60 minutes to go through the four-step wash and rinse process. Afterwards it is moved to a specialized enclosure to dry off. Then begins the multi-day process of waterproofing: a labor-intensive effort on the part of both patient and staff. It involves extensive feather preening, several days of moving back and forth between pools and drying pens, frequent checkups, and additional spot washes as needed. Once the bird has completely re-established its waterproofing, it will remain in care until any additional injuries have been resolved and it has attained a healthy state.

We are thankful for our partner organizations, especially the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network, for stabilizing and transferring many of these oiled birds to us.

The Oiled Wildlife Care Network generously supports a portion of the cost for caring for these animals. To learn more about the Oiled Wildlife Care Network and their work with oil-affected wildlife, please visit https://owcn.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/

If you would like to contribute to the care of these birds, please donate today at https://www.bird-rescue.org/get-involved/donate

To report an oiled or injured animal, call the Oiled Wildlife Care Network hotline at (877) 823-6926.

Cleaned of oil, Western Grebes swim in one of the pelagic pools at the wildlife center in San Pedro, CA. Photo: Angie Trumbo/International Bird Rescue

February 5, 2019

All You Need Is Love: Valentine’s Day Gift Idea

Russ Curtis

Celebrate Valentine’s Day by symbolically adopting a pair of ducklings in honor of your special someone!

At International Bird Rescue, we are dedicated to rescuing waterbirds in crisis and inspiring people to act toward balance with the natural world and care for the home we share with wildlife. Your adoption will be a meaningful and fun way to celebrate this holiday with your loved one.

Please make a $15 donation here and you will receive a confirmation email with instructions for how to download and print your customizable Valentine’s Day e-card.

Whether you’re thinking of a dear friend, sibling, parent or sweetheart give the gift that makes a difference!

 

February 4, 2019

Patient of the Week: Guadalupe Murrelet

Angie Trumbo

This endangered Guadalupe Murrelet came into care was suffering from toe and hock lesions. Photos by Angie Trumbo

On January 6, a small, unusual bird was found stowing away on a boat bound for the Port of Los Angeles and was brought into our L.A. wildlife center for care. Little did the rescuer know that the bird he had found was an endangered Guadalupe Murrelet.

Guadalupe Murrelets were once considered the same species as Scripps’s Murrelets and lumped together under the species name Xantus’s Murrelet. In 2012, it was determined that the two were in fact distinct species with their own separate breeding populations. The Guadalupe Murrelet can be distinguished from the Scripps’s by the amount of white plumage on its face extending up and around the eye. These tiny auks are threatened by invasive species on their breeding islands off the coast of Baja as well as by the effects of climate change.

This is the first Guadalupe Murrelet we’ve ever had the opportunity and privilege to rehabilitate! Thankfully, the patient arrived in fairly good body condition but was suffering from toe and hock lesions. Our team closely monitored its condition over the course of two weeks and quickly fell in love with this little bird’s cute features and feisty attitude. The murrelet did well in care and spent most of its time in one of our outdoor pelagic pools where it could swim and dive alongside other smaller species such as Eared Grebes and Ruddy Ducks.

On Jan 25, our friends at the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium carefully loaded this former patient onto their research boat and gave it an open ocean release, which allowed it to have a fresh start closer to its natural range. We were sad to see this little murrelet go, but are thrilled to have helped a member of an endangered species recover and return to its home in the wild!

We are grateful to supporters like you that make it possible for us to respond when birds like this little murrelet are in crisis. If you would like to help us continue this work, please consider donating today.

Guadalupe Murrelet gets some swim time in just before being released in late January.

January 1, 2019

2018 By the Numbers

Russ Curtis

Species Treated: 97

2018 was a great year for expanding our knowledge surrounding some of our less common patients. Between our two California wildlife centers, Bird Rescue cared for 97 different species of aquatic birds! Some of our unique species this year include: Belted Kingfisher, Long-tailed Duck, Pelagic Cormorant, Black-vented Shearwater, Rhinoceros Auklet and both Brown and Red-footed Booby.

Washing Birds: 100

Even in the absence of a major oil spill, our staff and volunteers still wash birds throughout the year. Some of these birds arrive oiled from the natural seep off of the coast of Ventura, others come in contaminated by other substances such as vegetable or motor oil. In 2018 we washed over 100 birds ranging from Great Horned Owls to Brown Pelicans. Working with these cases of individual oiled birds allows us to improve our skills and training so that our team remains ready to respond in the event that a spill does occur.

Total Birds: 3,000+

Between our SF Bay-Delta wildlife center in Fairfield and our L.A. wildlife center in San Pedro, we cared for over 3,000 patients in 2018. While we do care for a broad range of species, there are some types of birds that come into our care most frequently as a result of various forms of urban/wildlife conflict. Orphaned ducks, geese, herons, and egrets flood our centers during the baby bird season when their nests have been disturbed, or when they have been separated from their parents. Gulls, pelicans, and cormorants are some of the birds we see most frequently injured due to fishing line entanglement or hook ingestion. Grebes come into care almost daily during the winter months that have become oiled due to natural seep on their journey south for the winter.

Volunteer Hours: 20,000+

Our team of dedicated volunteers are what make this work possible. Together they put in over 20,000 hours of work over the course of 2018. From bird care, feeding and cleaning to education, outreach and administrative assistance, our volunteers do it all with smiles on their faces. Thank you so much to each and every person who volunteers their time and efforts to help rescue waterbirds in crisis! If you would like to volunteer at either of our California wildlife centers, you can learn more and apply HERE.

Birds Released: 1267

Our favorite number from this year: 1267. That is the number of birds successfully released or transferred in 2018. This is the reason we do the work that we do. There is nothing quite like watching a wild bird return to its natural home in good health and full strength. We hope that these moments and images inspire you to take action every day to protect the natural home of wildlife and ourselves.