Every Bird Matters
news and views from international bird rescue

Posts Tagged ‘wildlife’

May 9, 2010

Two oiled birds, now cleaned, to be released

The first two oiled birds found in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill have been cleaned and are now recovered and ready for release>

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) will release the birds at 4 p.m. Monday, May 10, at Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge on the Atlantic coast northeast of Vero Beach, Florida. Directions

Please note: Accredited media wishing to cover the release of the birds should be at Centennial Tower in the refuge by 3:30 p.m. Monday, May 10.

The birds are a Northern Gannet and a Brown Pelican. The Gannet, a young male nicknamed “Lucky” by the workers who rescued him, was found April 27 in the Gulf near the source of the link. Clean-up workers on a boat reached out to him with a pole and he jumped on it. He was brought to the Bird Rehabilitation Facility at Ft. Jackson, Louisiana, on April 30.

The Tri-State Bird Rescue team, which includes the International Bird Rescue Research Center, evaluated Lucky and found he was about 80 percent oiled, giving him an orange appearance. He was thin and dehydrated, so wildlife veterinarian Dr. Erica Miller gave him intravenous fluids several times, as well as oral fluids and Pepto-Bismol for oil he may have ingested. He was washed with a Dawn detergent solution on May 1, and has been in an outdoor pool for a few days now, gaining weight.

The pelican, also a young male, was found May 3 on Stone Island in Breton Sound on the Louisiana coast by a team that included personnel from the Service, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the U.S. Minerals Management Service. He was taken to the Ft. Jackson facility by helicopter the day he was rescued. He was thin and moderately oiled over his whole body. The Tri-State Bird Rescue Team, and wildlife veterinarian Dr. Miller treated him with IV and oral fluids, and started hand-feeding fish to him the first day. He was washed on 4 May and has been in an outside pool for several days, gaining weight.

Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge was the nation’s first wildlife refuge, established by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1903. It was selected as the release site because it is located within the Indian River Lagoon, the most biologically diverse estuary in the United States. It has a large population of Gannets and Pelicans for the two rescued birds to join, and is out of the current oil spill trajectory.

The birds will be released by Dr. Sharon K. Taylor, a veterinarian and Environmental Contaminants Division Chief for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Directions to the refuge are available at:
http://www.fws.gov/pelicanisland/visiting/directions.html

May 9, 2010

Day Nine: Gulf spill wildlife update: 5 oiled birds

On the ninth day of the Gulf Oil Spill wildlife response, International Bird Rescue continues to work with Tri-State Bird Rescue, the lead oiled wildlife organization, to staff rehabilitation centers in Louisiana, Alabama Mississippi and Florida. IBRRC’s Jay Holcomb checks in with his daily update on the wildlife response:

On May 8 we sent out 6 field teams, under the direction of the US Fish & Wildlife Service, to continue to look for oiled birds. Only some spotty oiled gulls have been sighted so far. No new oiled birds have been recovered. The 4 live birds in care at Ft. Jackson, LA and the one live bird in Pensacola, FL are all doing well. 

Here are the latest bird numbers:

Fort Jackson, Louisiana Oiled Bird Rehabilitation Center

4 live oiled birds

* 2 brown pelicans
* 1 northern gannet
* 1 green heron

3 dead oiled birds

* 2 northern gannets
* 1 magnificent frigatebird

Pensacola, Floria Oiled Bird Rehabilitation Center

1 live oiled bird

* 1 northern gannet

Thanks again for your continued interest in our efforts,

– Jay Holcomb, Executive Director, International IBRRC

The bird rescue group has 16 response team members on the ground including veterinarians, wildlife rehabilitation managers and facilities and capture specialists.

There are now four Oiled Bird Rescue Centers in Fort Jackson, Louisiana, Theodore, Alabama, Gulfport, Mississippi and Pensacola, Florida.

Accredited media staff can visit the Fort Jackson, LA rescue center any day from 1 pm to 2 pm. It’s located at MSRC:, 100 Herbert Harvey Drive, Buras, LA 100 Herbert Harvey Drive, Buras, Louisiana.

The oil spill involves a ruptured drilling platform approximately 50 miles off the Louisiana coast. The drilling rig, the Deepwater Horizon, exploded on April 20, 2010 and sank in 5,000 feet of water. More than 100 workers scrambled off the burning rig in lifeboats. 11 workers are missing and presumed dead.

The ocean floor crude rupture is now gushing at least 5,000 barrels — or 210,000 gallons — of oil a day. While engineers work feverishly to cap the well, many officials worry the leak could go on for months.

(Photos above: Top: Oiled Brown Pelican is stabilized before washing at the Fort Jackson; interior shot of inside of the Louisiana Oiled Bird Rehabilitation Center, middle, wash area and bird pens in background)

May 5, 2010

CBS News Report: Oil Spill = Ecological Chaos


A major environmental threat looms for much of the wildlife along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico due to a recent oil rig disaster. Jeff Corwin from “The Animal Planet” reports from Biloxi, MS for the CBS Evening News.

September 19, 2009

Jane Goodall speaker at Wildlife Expo in SF

Join conservation heroes from around the world – including Dr. Jane Goodall – on Saturday, October 3, 2009 from 10am – 6pm at the Wildlife Conservation Expo Day in San Francisco.

Hear about the challenges and successes of working on the frontlines of conservation. Visit the exhibits of local and international conservation organizations and purchase wildlife art and crafts from around the world. IBRRC will also have a booth at the expo.

The event will be held near near AT&T Park at Mission Bay Conference Center, 1675 Owens St, San Francisco, CA 94107.

See: Directions and parking info (Printable PDF)

Update:

The main auditorium where Dr. Goodall will be speaking has 600 seats and we fully expect this to sell out. These tickets will be given on a first come first serve basis and may be gone as early as mid-September. Blue wristbands will be given to the first 600 seats sold. Those holding a blue wristband can expect a seat in the auditorium with Dr. Goodall provided you are in line at the auditorium by 12:15pm sharp. If you receive a yellow wristband, you are guaranteed a seat in a different auditorium where Dr. Goodall’s presentation will be simulcast to the large video screen. Both wristband colors also allow you access to all the other presentations, shopping, and information gathering.

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

December 3, 2008

Additional wildlife training classes added

Due to the overwhelming public response, IBRRC has added additional wildlife emergency training classes for January, February and March 2009. The classes will be held in Berkeley, Oakland, Fremont and Santa Cruz. A class in Southern California is also scheduled.

See updated list on our website

The first day-long wildlife rescue classes, designed by WildRescue’s Rebecca Dmytryk, will be offered at IBRRC’s Fairfield, CA bird center on Sunday, December 7, 2008. Sign-up now

Participants will be taught successful capture strategies and handling and restraint methods of native species, regulations, re-nesting of young, first aid and stabilization, and disaster response. Completion of this class does not in any way exempt students from local, state, and federal laws governing the capture and possession of oiled or non-oiled wildlife.

Each class is from 8 AM to 5 PM. The fee for the class is $40

The classes are only open to those 18 years and older.

See the San Jose Mercury News story: Training available for animal rescue volunteers

November 13, 2008

New wildlife rescue training classes offered

IBRRC is pleased to offer a handful of new day-long wildlife rescue classes, designed by WildRescue’s Rebecca Dmytryk. The first will be offered at IBRRC’s Fairfield, CA bird center on Sunday, December 7, 2008. Others are scheduled for Berkeley, Oakland and Fremont in January and February 2009. Classes in Southern California will also be scheduled soon. See complete list

Participants will be taught successful capture strategies and handling and restraint methods of native species, regulations, re-nesting of young, first aid and stabilization, and disaster response. Completion of this class does not in any way exempt students from local, state, and federal laws governing the capture and possession of oiled or non-oiled wildlife.

Each class is from 8 AM to 5 PM. The classes are only open to those 18 years and older.

More information and sign-up for this training class

This past Saturday, November 7th, response team members Mark Russell, Rebecca Dmytryk and Duane Titus marked the one-year anniversary of the Cosco Busan by teaching a wildlife capture class to a large group of Bay Area citizens. The class, offered by WildRescue, was an overwhelming success, filled with optimism and enthusiasm.

Wildlife rescue is a new and evolving profession. No where else can you find this unique curriculum of skills being taught by those who have been rescuing debilitated wild animals throughout the world for over 37 years. While offering this unique schooling to other wildlife rescue organizations, government agencies, and the public, IBRRC sees this as a means of identifying potential candidates for its response team recruitment campaign – a program funded by a generous grant recently awarded by the San Francisco Foundation Cosco Busan Oil Spill Fund.

In 2009 IBRRC will invite 30 people to participate in a year-long training program to develop the skills they’ll need to join their California based emergency response team. 10 new members will be added to IBRRC oiled wildlife response team and 20 new people will join the rehabilitation team.

Nothing like this has ever been done before. This is a new and exciting step forward in bolstering California’s ability to respond effectively to oiled wildlife.

Download the class flyer

September 26, 2008

Wildlife rescue training marks Cosco Busan anniversary

Rescuing disabled wild animals requires a unique set of skills, very different from those used in handling domestic animals. WildRescue is offering a unique class on these commands, taught by international experts who respond to wildlife emergencies on a regular basis. While the class is tailored for animal control officers, park rangers, game wardens, biologists, and wildlife rehabilitators, members of the public are invited. Students must be 18 years or older.

Helping to mark the one-year anniversary of the Cosco Busan disaster, the first class of many classes is being offered November 8th through the Berkeley Marina Shorebird Park Nature Center. A second, hosted by the Farallones Marine Sanctuary, is slated for December 6th, at Crissy Field. For more information on hosting a class in your area, or to register, go to wildrescue.org or call 831-869-6241. Class fee is $40 with discounts available to government agencies and charities.

“There are a lot of people out there who want to know how to help animals in crisis. History has shown us that when we don’t give them that information, they’ll take things into their own hands, said Jay Holcomb, Executive Director of the International Bird Rescue Research Center. “By providing this type of training, we’re able to guide people to work within the system for the greater good.”

WildRescue’s director, Rebecca Dmytryk, sees this educational campaign as a means of building a community’s corps of specially trained individuals who may be called upon to rescue injured wild animals – be there one or thousands. She hopes many will be recruited by local rescue organizations wishing to bolster their own capabilities.

November 22, 2007

1,053 birds arrived live; 767 washed

New bird care numbers for the SF spill, now more than two weeks old, have been posted:

Birds arrived live: 1,053
Washed: 767
Died/euthanized: 472
Released: 122
Found dead in field: 1,544

Bird numbers also updated daily on this blog’s right hand column.

If you do find an oiled bird, please call (415) 701-2311.

OWCN numbers updated: 11/21/07 @ 8:00 PM

November 15, 2007

Still out searching for birds

A week has past since the foul stench of bunker crude left its mark on San Francisco Bay. The oil is being cleaned off beaches and the bay. And more importantly from a wildlife standpoint, birds are STILL being rescued.

Crews are working at this very moment trying to locate and catch any oiled bird in distress. They’re searching the rocky shores of Treasure Island, the muddy flats at low tide in Berkeley, the estuaries of Alameda and the Hoffman Marsh area in Richmond that may contain beached oiled birds. They use cat-like tactics, scouting out locations for night time pickups using beacons of light to sneak up on oiled, hyperthermic birds.

It’s not easy work. The birds are spooked easily and wary of anyone carrying a net. But this is the front lines of wildlife rescue and these dedicated crews from IBRRC/OWCN, Fish & Game and others are doing everything in their power to pickup every distressed bird possible.

Please, if you see a birds that need to be rescued, call 311 in San Francisco; outside the SF, please call (415) 701-2311 or if you can’t get through, submit an online sighting report.

Be patient. The crews have a lot of ground to cover. Some areas may be cordoned off in advance to calm skitish birds, allowing crews to capture the unaware avian victims.

Above all, keep unleashed dogs away from beaches and shorelines containing birds. Without your help, good will and continued public bird sightings, the search will surely drag on.

Check our website for more updates: http://www.ibrrc.org

November 14, 2007

Being grateful for what we have in California

From Jay Holcomb, International Bird Rescue’s Executive Director:

I am resting for a minute so I thought I would write a very short update for the blog. First, thank you all for your well wishes and support. We are so grateful to the people who have contributed their time or money to this effort and to IBRRC’s other programs.

New Video report by Contra Costa Times

Secondly, although this is another horrible oil spill impacting the birds we all love to see in our wonderful bay, I want to say to you that we have something unique in this state that no one else has and that we should all be grateful for. I am and maybe that is because I have been through the horror of trying to care for oiled birds in funky disgusting old buildings that were called “emergency bird treatment facilities”. They never worked!

Since 1990 we now have a state mandated program, the Oiled Wildlife Care Network, OWCN, that allows us to provide the “best achievable care” for oiled birds in Califonia. IBRRC is a member participant of the OWCN and we manage two large oiled birds facilities in the state for the network. The center we are working in during this spill is our headquarters based in Cordelia, CA. The other facility is in San Pedro, CA, near Long Beach. We love both facilities and after years of working out of warehouses and horrible make-shift emergency centers that very much limited our ability to care for oiled birds, a day does not go by that I am not grateful for what we have in this state.

IBRRC was one of the first groups in the world to even try to rehabilitate oiled birds way back in 1971 when two oil tankers collided in the fog in San Francisco Bay. And now we’re veterans of over 200 oil spills. Can you believe it?

It is hard to imagine we have been all over the world and managed the oiled bird rescue and rehabilitation programs at the Exxon Valdez oil spill, the Treasure oil spill in Cape Town, South Africa where the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and IBRRC jointly worked with local groups to save over 21,000 oiled penguins. Yes, 21,000 penguins and we had remarkable 95% release rate in that spill.

But no where else in all these spills and all these countries do they have a program that coordinates concerned and trained people like our response team and builds and helps maintain state of the art oiled bird rehabilitation facilities. It is only here in California that this is ready and available for use in these tragic spills.

So even though we are ALL fed up with politics and bureaucracy, I just want to point out that at least we have this great program for the birds that live or fly through our state.

That is if for now. We are posting pictures so that you can see the birds we are caring for and we will keep people updated as this spill progresses.

Thanks again for all your support,

Jay Holcomb, IBRRC