More slimed birds released; 200 back in wild

International Bird Rescue released 16 more healthy slime-free seabirds back into the wild today following a massive algae bloom incident off the coast of Oregon. Airlifted to safety by the U.S. Coast Guard, the rescue mission, which has united wildlife organizations and Bay Area residents, has saved the lives of hundreds of migratory birds.

IBRRC’s dedicated staff and volunteers have been working around the clock for more than a week in an unusual rescue mission that had all of the casualties but none of the financial resources usually available to save wildlife when oil is to blame. Instead, rescuers turned to the public to help save these seabirds from a life-threatening algal foam. Donate now

“We knew we had the expertise to help these animals,” said Jay Holcomb, Director of International Bird Rescue, “but it has been the incredible support we have received from wildlife groups, businesses and the public as well as access to a purpose-built oiled wildlife facility that is making this possible.”

“We also want to particularly acknowledge the tremendous support of the Coast Guard who airlifted most of these birds to California,” added Holcomb. “They made a real difference to this mission and we were so saddened to hear that colleagues of that crew were involved in the crash near San Diego. Our thoughts are with the families and friends of everyone involved.”

By the end of this week over 200 seabirds will have returned to the wild to continue their southern migration, the remainder leaving the San Francisco Oiled Wildlife Care & Education Center (SFBOCEC) in the coming days. International Bird Rescue is still seeking donations to support the rescue effort, which is likely to continue for at least another week.

More info about Sea Slime ’09