Every Bird Matters
news and views from international bird rescue

Posts Tagged ‘duck.’

May 30, 2009

Unusual “Alien in a Duck” x-ray still a hit

Back in May 2006 and unusual image in a routine bird x-ray caused a major stir on the web that is still being felt today.

The x-ray of a injured duck showed what looked to be a facial image of an alien like face. After tremendous media attention, the original x-ray was auctioned off on eBay to help pay International Bird Rescue’s ongoing bird care. It was purchased by an online gaming website GoldenPalace.com which purchases oddities to support causes and promotes its business: “Alien Duck Migrates into Online Casino’s Collection!

“The alien x-ray is still one of Bird Rescue’s most popular web pages,” says Russ Curtis, the group’s Technology Manager and Webmaster. “Our web reports show that in the last year alone the page had nearly 30,000 hits.”

From the original web page:

The Bird Rescue staff discussed if an alien life form was either consumed by or trying to communicate with the people of Earth through the duck, because the center is located in an area of California known for its mysterious crop circles.

The staff noted that the symmetry of the alien’s face is perfect, with an intense grimace, as if it was in anguish after being eaten.

Unfortunately the duck died due to its injuries. UC Davis veterinarians did a necropsy and the duck’s stomach had some grain in it, but no alien. Bird Rescue then put the one-of-a-kind x-ray up on eBay, with all the proceeds going toward funding wildlife rehabilitation programs. During the sale the eBay page received over 135,000 visits.

April 1, 2009

Company admits 1,600 ducks died in oily waste

A Canadian company is under fire this week for under-reporting duck deaths at an oil sands plant in northern Alberta.

A Syncrude executive admitted 1,606 duck carcasses were collected from the toxic oily waters – three times more than was reported following the incident last year. The ponds contain waste from the process of separating oil from sand.

The birds died in April 2008 after becoming coated with the residual oil floating on the pond’s surface.

The company was accused of failing to prevent the birds from landing near the oily waters. The mining giant is scheduled to appear next next month in a Fort McMurray court on charges that carry up to $800,000 in combined fines. The charges also could include jail time for individuals deemed directly responsible.

Syncrude says it’s working to improve waterfowl hazing protocols in an effort to discourage waterfowl from tailing ponds areas: Details

Tar sand extraction is an important Canadian industry but environmentalists have criticized the process as having a terrible affect on birds. See: Tar Sands Mining Ravages Birds

News report:

CNN: Canada oil firm confirms 1,600 bird deaths

March 5, 2009

First round of wildlife classes trains 385

The first group of Wildlife Emergency Response classes have been a tremendous success. Thanks to the 385 committed folks who attended the trainings.

These classes grew out of an increased interest in animal capture and care by the public and public agencies following the November 2007 Cosco Busan spill. They wanted to learn more about how to help saved animals in crisis situation and IBRRC saw a new opportunity to enhance local capabilities to help wildlife in need of rescue and rehabilitation.

These all day programs were developed by WildRescue and put on by International Bird Rescue Research Center (IBRRC), one of the world leaders in the recovery and care of oiled wildlife and aquatic birds.


The video above was from the the last training with East Bay Regional Parks workers. They were learning to catch “Robo Duck,” a seven pound, 10 inch tall, robotic duck. Robo Duck is able to reach a top speed of 35 miles an hour and simulates a wild birds reluctance to be captured. It was built by Duane Titus of WildRescue.

If you taken the class, you can apply to join IBRRC oil spill response team. Details

For those that couldn’t attend the first classes, you can submit your contact information and we’ll alert you when we can schedule new classes in your area. Sign-up for an alert on upcoming classes