OR Bird Event

foam_slime_loon_2009Just a quick post to alert our Members about a major bird event that OWCN partners are heavily involved with.

More than 450 birds have been transported to the San Francisco Bay Oiled Wildlife Care & Education Center from the Wildlife Center of the North Coast (near Astoria, OR) as a result of a phytoplankton bloom off of Oregon’s coast. This event appears to be similar in nature to the 2007 bird event in Monterey Bay, where more than 550 live birds were collected and cared for at OSPR’s Marine Wildlife Veterinary Care & Research Center in Santa Cruz (coincidentally, at the same time as the Cosco Busan spill).  Due to the small facilities available in Astoria, IBRRC has organized two transports (truck and C-130 air) to get these seabirds to CA so that they can receive care from IBRRC staff and volunteers at our purpose-built facilities.  An additional 100 birds were also sent to PAWS in Lynnwood, WA for additional care.  I have been in regular contact with Jay Holcomb of IBRRC, and the OWCN (via UC Davis’ staff and equipment) are supporting IBRRC’s efforts as we can.

To stay updated on this effort (and to see how you can best help), please keep tabs on IBRRC’s excellent blog. For more information on the results of the 2007 event in CA (including how a diatom can cause such problems in seabirds), please read Dave Jessup’s PLoS One article.

-Mike

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