Every Bird Matters
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News

November 8, 2019

A Bird Lovers Night Of Generosity & Masquerade Fun

Attendees strike a pose with their Night-Heron Masquerade masks at a Bird Rescue fundraising event in San Francisco. Photo by Gary Wagner

Shirl Simpson, left, the Branch Manager of the U.S. Post Office in downtown Oakland, CA with JD Bergeron, International Bird Rescue’s Executive Director. Photo by Gary Wagner

The Night Heron Masquerade was a huge success and we are proud to announce that event raised over $80,000! The October 26, 2019 event was filled to capacity as 150 attendees cam to support International Bird Rescue’s ongoing wildlife programs.

Thank you so much to all of those who attended and who donated, and a special thank you to our event sponsors and silent auction donors. We had a fantastic time celebrating with such a fun group of supporters, staff and volunteers. Each attendee took home a bird mask of their choice and a poster from the event in San Francisco.

Shirl Simpson, the Branch Manager, of the U.S. Post Office in downtown Oakland, CA was given special recognition for her efforts in helping support the Oakland Heronry Rescue. Nearly a hundred birds, Black-crowned Night-Herons and Snowy Egrets were rescued after a tree snapped in front of the post office sending baby birds and their nests tumbling to the sidewalk.

A big thank you also to Gary Wagner Photography for the great attendee photos, to Tony Corman & Laura Klein for providing the live music, and to Michael Warner for creating the event artwork!

Executive Director JD Bergeron was master of ceremonies. Photo by Russ Curtis–International Bird Rescue

Handmade bird masks were handed out to each attendee. The masks were created by volunteer artists. Photo by Gary Wagner

September 9, 2019

Team Yes We Peli-CAN! With Community Support, Conquers the Bridge Once Again

On Labor Day 45 members of Team Yes We Peli-CAN! participated in the annual Conquer the Bridge Race in San Pedro, CA.

Bird Rescue supporters in right blue team shirts could be spotted on two iconic California bridges on Labor Day, September 2, 2019.

Team sponsors included Chevron and Bakeology.

In San Pedro, 45 members of  Team Yes We Peli-CAN! walked and ran over the Vincent Thomas Bridge in the 11th annual Conquer the Bridge Race. This community event, part of the region’s Fleet Week celebration, draws thousands of participants and offers the perfect opportunity for Bird Rescue to raise awareness of the birds that share our local habitat and the work that we do for them.

At the same time, volunteers from our San Francisco Bay-Delta Wildlife Center and their mascot dog, Finnegan, walked together over the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge in support of the team’s efforts. “I was thrilled to see so many members of our Bird Rescue family united, here in San Pedro and hundreds of miles away in Northern California, taking on this physical challenge and being an active part of our communities and promoting the important work that we do for the birds” said Angie Trumbo, Yes We Peli-CAN! Team captain.

All summer long, Team Yes We Peli-CAN! Has worked to fundraise in support of animal care at our wildlife centers with a goal of reaching $15,000 by race day. Thanks to their efforts, a generous team sponsorship from Chevron, and numerous donations from the public and Bird Rescue supporters, we surpassed our goal, bringing in just under $16,000!

With another successful run as Team Yes We Peli-CAN! under our belts, we look forward to next year and bringing the team back for Conquer the Bridge 2020!

Runners and walkers on the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro, CA. Photos by International Bird Rescue

 

September 3, 2019

You’re Invited to the October 26th Night-Heron Masquerade in San Francisco

Calling all night birds to join us for an upbeat Bird Rescue celebration on Saturday, October 26th from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m., on the beautiful Ohana Floor of Salesforce East in San Francisco. Buy Tickets Now

Come to the event to share your love of birds as well as living plants on Salesforce’a Ohana East 30th floor.

The Masquerade will feature delicious vegetarian flavors, an open bar with wine and beer, amazing auction items, and fun opportunities to celebrate the rescue and rehabilitation of San Francisco Bay Area birds. The event is a perfect starting point for your Halloween weekend celebrations, or as a classy, uplifting evening all on its own.

A selection of masks will be available to attendees. There is no need to bring a mask! Cocktail attire is suggested.

The Ohana Room in Salesforce East offers a gorgeous setting with lovely 30th floor views of San Francisco and beyond, over 3000 live plants, 65 different species! In the decor, a self-playing piano, and a giant screen for photographic highlights of our bird rescue efforts. The venue is easily accessible by BART and MUNI.

Please note the deadline to register for this event is by Tuesday, October 22nd with a full name and an e-mail address for all attendees and guests. A government-issued photo ID is required at the entrance. Unfortunately, Salesforce does not allow day-of additions ahead of the event. The event is at 350 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94103. The venue is easily accessible by BART and MUNI.

If you would like to become an event sponsor, please contact Toni Arkoosh Pinsky at toni.pinsky@ bird­rescue.org or JD Bergeron at 510.289.1472.

The Ohana Floor in Salesforce East offers a gorgeous setting with over 3000 live plants and views of San Francisco Bay. Photos by Russ Curtis – International Bird Rescue

 

August 19, 2019

Release of the Week: Snowy Egrets and Black-crowned Night-Herons

A bevy of Snowy Egrets, many from the Oakland Heronry Rescue in July, were released this month at Arrowhead Marsh in Oakland. Photo by Cheryl Reynolds/International Bird Rescue

With supporters looking on, another group of Snowy Egrets and Black-crowned Night Herons, were released back to the wild last week at Arrowhead Marsh in Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline.

A pair of Black-crowned Night-Herons saunter out of cages back to the wild spaces in Oakland. Photo by Cheryl Reynolds/International Bird Rescue

Most of the released birds were part of the Oakland Heronry Rescue that began on July 10th after a large ficus tree containing a rookery of 50+ nests, split at the trunk and toppled in front of the downtown Oakland U.S. Post Office at Jackson and 13th Streets. The rookery included many nesting birds with baby egrets and herons, some of them which spilled onto sidewalks below.

Over a three day stretch, a total of 90 birds were rescued – including 51 Snowy Egrets, 22 Black-crowned Night-Herons, and 17 eggs.

You can still donate via the GivingGrid!

Thankfully a concerned citizen noticed these birds in crisis and immediately called our San Francisco Bay-Delta Wildlife Center to come to the rescue. A Bird Rescue team, including JD Bergeron, Executive Director and Michelle Bellizzi, Response Manager, was on the scene right away at Jackson at 13th Streets and began gently scooping up the surviving birds and preparing them for transport to our clinic in Fairfield.

Read: It always starts with a phone call

After the remaining tree was deemed unsafe for the public as well as the nesting birds, the team worked alongside a tree service that helped trim branches and collect all the remaining eggs and birds in nests.

“This rescue has been an epic journey for us all–on-scene rescuers, partners, staff, volunteers, donors, and supporters!” said JD Bergeron.

“The plight of these fallen birds caught the attention of many who dare to hope that people can still come together to make good things happen. TV, radio, blogs, and newspapers helped to carry this good news story in the midst of so much bad news,” Bergeron added.

Thanks to our generous donors, Bird Rescue was able to raise enough in donations to cover the food, medicine, and daily care for these young herons and egrets. But our work doesn’t end with these 90 birds — we provide wildlife rescue and rehabilitation programs 365 days a year, and our 3,500+ patients each year don’t come with insurance.

The support of the community means the world to us and reinforces to us the belief that each of us, every day, must take action to protect the natural home of wildlife and ourselves. You can still help us with a donation

A Snowy Egret gets ready to fly off in Arrowhead Marsh in Oakland. Photo by Cheryl Reynolds/International Bird Rescue

August 13, 2019

It Always Starts With A Phone Call

Baby Snowy Egrets, many that had tumbled out of nests onto a downtown Oakland sidewalk, were gently scopped up and put into boxes for transport to Bird Rescue’s San Francisco Bay-Delta Wildlife Center. Photo by Michelle Bellizzi–International Bird Rescue

Note: First person post about the Oakland Heronry Rescue in July 2019 by Michelle Bellizzi, Bird Rescue’s Response Manager

After the ficus tree collapsed, Oakland city crews cleaned up the fallen branches. Photo by Michelle Bellizzi–International Bird Rescue

On Wednesday July 10, 2019, I’d just arrived home from work and was getting dinner together, when The Call came in. International Bird Rescue’s San Francisco Bay-Delta Wildlife Center Manager Isabel Luevano had picked up a message on the hospital phone describing a sad scene: a large ficus tree next to the downtown Oakland U.S. Post Office and used for nesting by the city’s iconic Black-crowned Night-Herons and Snowy Egrets had collapsed, and numerous baby birds had fallen with their nests across a city sidewalk.

Luckily, I live just a short distance away from the site and was able to grab my partner and convince him that saving baby birds was *the* thing to do in the evening, and together we headed down to the site. On our way, I received a text from Response Services Director Barbara Callahan, who had picked up a call on our 24-hour Oil Spill Emergency Hotline about the situation. We were met at the site by JD Bergeron, Bird Rescue’s Executive Director, and his partner Travis (Bird Rescue has a wonderful tradition of wrangling our significant others to step in when needed, and all of our husbands, wives, and partners are angels!), as well as concerned locals and city workers prepared to clean up the mess.

We quickly discovered that the tree in question had split in half, and the City needed to clean the fallen branches from the sidewalk. The remaining half of the tree was in imminent danger of falling as well and would need to be removed.

One of the people on-site was Shirl Simpson, the Branch Manager of the Post Office, and it only took a few moments for Shirl to become one of my favorite people in the world. Upon seeing the downed tree, the nestlings, and the remaining bird nests in the tree, Shirl said unequivocally: “We are going to save these birds – these are OUR birds, and we’re not going to let anything happen to them.” Shirl was the person who had contacted our Emergency Line – she had remembered a Channel 7 story on Bird Rescue and went to “Seven on Your Side” to find our number.

The sight of the tree was intimidating and heartbreaking: half of the tree was down with baby birds in the branches on the ground, and the half that remained standing had approximately 40 nests visible in the canopy…which was 30 feet up and inaccessible without a cherry picker.

“We are going to save these birds – these are OUR birds, and we’re not going to let anything happen to them.” said Shirl Simpson (seated), the Branch Manager of the Post Office, along with JD Bergeron holding a rescued Black-crown Night-Heron. Photo by Cheryl Reynolds–International Bird Rescue

On Wednesday evening, our job was clear: rescue the babies that had fallen and clear the sidewalk, and work on a plan for the remaining tree on Thursday. We sprang into action working alongside the Oakland City workers, carefully searching through the downed branches to extract any babies and handing the cleared branches to the city workers for chipping. We rescued 18 baby herons and egrets, and cleared the downed half of the tree just before dark. The birds were taken back to our Fairfield facility by 9:30 pm.

Later on Thursday and Friday, JD and I returned to the site to collect additional birds and to oversee the complete removal of the tree. Because the tree itself was on Postal Service property, Shirl hired Davey Tree service to remove the birds from their nests and capture unflighted birds in the tree canopy *and* cut the tree in sections as they removed the birds.

JD and I stayed on the ground playing outfielder, collecting the birds from the workers in the picker, and identifying areas in the canopy with birds so the worker was aware of birds moving through the foliage and nest areas. Because of the slow nature of the work, birds were transported to the facility midday and in the evening.

Interestingly, as the workers moved through the tree south to north, the birds got older! Apparently most of the nests on the south side of the tree were nestlings, and the north side of the tree housed the birds that were **just about ready to fledge**. As less and less tree was available to hide in, the birds congregated at the north edge and several proved to be good fliers and able to fly from tree to tree, and the decision was made to not capture them. By noon on Friday, the last branch had been cut, and the last birds were driven to our center so the real work could begin!

News Media Stories

Black-crowned Night-Herons, Snowy Egrets released into wild after surviving Oakland tree collapse, ABC-7-News

Using a cherry picker, Davey Tree Service, helped safely remove other birds and nests before trimming the tree back in front of the Post Office at 13th and Jackson Streets in downtown Oakland. Photo by Michelle Bellizzi–International Bird Rescue

July 12, 2019

Bird Rescue Jumps Into Action in Oakland – Rescuing Baby Birds from Fallen Tree

Birds rescued in Oakland include 50 Snowy Egret chicks and nestlings. All are now in care at Bird Rescue’s San Francisco Bay-Delta Wildlife Center. 📷 > Cheryl Reynolds-International Bird Rescue

Disaster struck this week at a large heron and egret rookery in downtown Oakland, CA. A large ficus tree split and partially toppled on Wednesday, sending dozens of baby birds tumbling to the ground.

A concerned citizen saw these birds in crisis and immediately called our San Francisco Bay-Delta wildlife center to come to the rescue. A Bird Rescue team, including JD Bergeron, Executive Director and Michelle Bellizzi, Response Manager, was on the scene right away at Jackson at 13th Streets and began collecting the surviving birds to take into care.

By the end of day on Friday, July 12, teams had rescued a total of 90 birds – including 51 Snowy Egrets, 22 Black-crowned Night-Herons, and 17 eggs.

Meanwhile, back at the clinic, staff and volunteers worked late into the night to prepare special enclosures for the incoming patients and take care of their immediate needs as they arrived.

We are so grateful to be able to care for all of these precious baby birds but rely on the public’s support to cover the costs of care for all of our patients.

Won’t you help us with a donation so these baby birds have a second chance at life?

One of the 22 Black-crowned Night-Herons rescued in Oakland is weighed during intake at our clinic in Fairfield.

What happens when a bird is rescued?

Our partners also deserve praise. They stepped forward to help us, including the Golden Gate Audubon, Oakland post office staff, law enforcement, and Davey Tree Services, the city-hired arborists to rescue the rest of the baby birds from this tree before the tree was taken down.

Our clinic assesses and stabilizes the birds; any eggs collected are put in incubators, and all chicks will need to be hand-fed by staff and volunteers multiple times a day. Each of these rescued birds will require weeks and sometimes months of care before they are able to be released back into a safe environment.

These birds – especially the Black-crowned Night-Herons– hold a special place in the heart of Oakland residents. Earlier this year, local school kids urged and won a petition to have the Oakland City Council declare the Night-Herons the official bird of Oakland. Read more

If too care for wildlife, please contribute what you can to help raise these birds in need!

Thank you for your generous support.

After the initial rescue of baby herons and egrets on Wednesday, a city crew cleans up a large part of a fallen tree in downtown Oakland, CA. IBR photo

On Thursday, working with Davey Tree Service using its cherry picker, teams helped carefuly capture heron and egret chicks and nestlings in the damaged ficus tree. 📷 > Cheryl Reynolds-International Bird Rescue

Some of the Snowy Egrets rescued from the downtown Oakland rookery. 📷 > Cheryl Reynolds-International Bird Rescue

JD Bergeron, Executive Director at Bird Rescue, directs rescuers while helping man a safety net to catch chicks and nestlings just in case they fall. 📷 > Cheryl Reynolds-International Bird Rescue

Black-crowned Night-Herons rescued at Oakland rookery. 📷 > Cheryl Reynolds-International Bird Rescue

June 21, 2019

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

What: Port of Los Angeles Wildlife Impact Mitigation Project, a special presentation: Hosted by International Bird Rescue and the Los Angeles Wildlife Center. Download Final Report PDF 3.6 MB

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 31, 2019

Goleta/421 Pier Oil Release Spill Event: Anything Can Happen

Site of the spill in Goleta, CA near 421 Pier at Haskell’s Beach.

On May 29, 2019 International Bird Rescue was activated for spill response by the Oiled Wildlife Care Network (OWCN) after approximately 80-125 gallons of crude were released into the Pacific Ocean on May 28 in Goleta, CA. This type of response is well within Bird Rescue’s wheelhouse, and we know what to expect: Within hours of notification, responders Susan Kaveggia and Jeannette Bates were on site and prepared to capture affected wildlife on May 29 and 30.

Luckily, few animals were impacted by this event, but just as in every drill or spill scenario, it pays to expect the unexpected! Several novel challenges came up during this event to keep everyone in the response thinking, including whether a pelican observed eating an oiled crab moments before capture was considered “contaminated” (ultimately, the bird was indeed considered oiled due to observable oil on its feet), and how to identify and process a deceased oiled sea cucumber (thanks to oceanic biologists!). Because we live in California and have a well-established and practiced Wildlife Response Plan and experienced responders in-state, these unexpected and unforeseen issues were resolved quickly without disrupting the response.

Bird Rescue is always ready to respond to an oil spill, whether it happens locally or abroad. In the same month as the Goleta Spill, our Response Management team traveled to Perth, Australia for SpillCon and Vancouver, BC for the Clean Pacific Conference. These events are sponsored by Industry and OSROs (Oil Spill Response Organizations) for Industry, and are a great opportunity to talk with our colleagues and share how Bird Rescue can help professionally manage and respond to wildlife affected in a spill.

 

May 22, 2019

Kids Speak Up, Take Action for Black-Crowned Night-Herons in Oakland!

Celebrating victory at city hall: Kids from Park Day School and supporters after the Black-crowned Night-Heron was named the Official Bird of the City of Oakland!

Many of the Black-crowned Night-Herons that are injured or orphaned come in to care at our San Francisco Bay-Delta Wildlife Center from rookeries in Oakland, CA.

One of the best ways to take action to protect birds in crisis is to use your voice! Even the smallest voices can make a big difference, and Bird Rescue was proud to support the efforts of elementary school students from Park Day School earlier this week as they set an example of how to speak up on behalf of birds.

It all began in 2017 when a group of third-graders learned about Black-crowned Night-Herons and the threats they face in their home town of Oakland. The city holds multiple breeding colonies for these birds, and each spring hundreds of them come into care at Bird Rescue and other wildlife rehabilitation centers when baby herons fall from their nests onto hard pavement or into busy areas. Moved by the plight of these unique birds, the students jumped into action and started a campaign to name the Black-crowned Night-Heron the official city bird of Oakland. Over the following months, they spread the word and gathered thousands of signatures.

Two years later, the hard work of these tenacious kids paid off! Bird Rescue Executive Director, JD Bergeron, had the pleasure of attending a city council meeting to support the students as they made their final presentation before city officials. A vote was held, and the motion to give the Black-crowned Night-Herons the official designation passed unanimously!

Each of us can make a difference, just like the Park Day School students. Keep an eye out for the challenges your local birds and wildlife face and raise awareness of them in your community!

“You cannot protect the environment unless you empower people, you inform them, and you help them understand that these resources are their own, that they must protect them.” – Wangari Maathai

Back in 2017, the students jumped into action and started a campaign to name the Black-crowned Night-Heron the official city bird of Oakland.

 

April 23, 2019

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

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!

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

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 21, 2019

Conquer the Bridge with team Yes We Peli-CAN!

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

Join the Bird Rescue team Yes We Peli-CAN! as we run/walk over the iconic Vincent Thomas Bridge at the Conquer the Bridge 2019 to raise awareness about aquatic birds in the Los Angeles Port area and fundraise to support our work. The event is on Labor Day, September 2nd.

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.

You can walk too!

March 15, 2019

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

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

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.