The Release Files: Brown Pelican from Refugio Oil Spill
One of the last oiled Brown Pelicans rehabilitated after being rescued at the Refugio Oil Spill was released this week.
Banded with special green Z44 leg band, the Pelican was returned to the wild on Tuesday, August 18th at White Point Beach in San Pedro, CA.
Originally banded as W19, was transferred to us on July 7th covered in oil from the May 19th spill in Santa Barbara County. After washing the bird, an abscess was found on its chest that required surgery to remove.
More than 50 oiled birds – mainly Brown Pelicans – were cared for at International Bird Rescue’s Los Angeles center located in San Pedro.
Read: Oil Spill Over, But Animal Care Continues by Kelly Berry, IBR’s Manger at the Los Angeles Center
The birds were oiled in Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties after an oil pipeline break spilled more than 100,000 gallons of crude at Refugio State Beach about 20 miles from the city of Santa Barbara.
A total of 252 oiled seabirds were collected. This includes 57 live oiled birds and 195 birds that were found dead. More info
Photos by Bill Steinkamp