Injured pelicans caught up in fishing line and other tackle continue to be picked up along Santa Cruz County beaches today.
After a lot of calls from the public, local wildlife groups and media attention, the California State Fish and Game has closed one pier to fishermen. The cement ship in Capitola is now off limits due to the high number of foraging pelicans in the area. The Capitola Wharf is expected to be closed on Wednesday until the high numbers of pelicans moves out of the area.
From our own Rebecca Dmytryk who is helping organize the pelican rescue operation in Santa Cruz County:
Capitola police are now involved and are asking fishermen to pull up their lines on the Capitola Wharf. There will be a meeting tomorrow morning and they will decide what action they will take – perhaps closing the pier for fishing only, allowing businesses to stay open. Contact with police was made by WildRescue volunteers Mari and Klaus Kloepell who have rescued a number of pelicans this afternoon. I will make contact with Captain Mayer of Capitola police in the morning and provide an update. Thanks to Wayne Freedman with ABC for doing the story that has helped up make headway here to get protection for these birds.
International Bird Rescue Research Center (Fairfield) admitted nine more pelicans from Santa Cruz yesterday, August 4th. Each one was suffering injuries from entanglement in fishing line and hooks. Birders are being asked to report any sightings to local rescuers. The toll-free wildlife hotline for California 866-WILD-911 or by calling directly 831-869-6241.