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)