This week rescuers captured a beer can collared gull in San Francisco. The WildRescue team caught the bird at Lake Merced out near the San Francisco Zoo and removed the aluminum beer can from the bird’s neck.
Experts believe that someone is maliciously catching gulls (seagulls) and collaring them with cut beer cans. Thanks to reports by members of the public and birders, sightings have come in from San Francisco (Pier 39 and another juvenile gull at Lake Merced), Half Moon Bay and various locations around the Bay Area.
The two organizations collaborating on this effort, International Bird Rescue (Fairfield) and WildRescue (Monterey), are seeking the public’s help is locating other birds. They ask that instead off attempting to capture the birds, which can make them more wary and harder to catch, sightings should be reported immediately by calling (831) 429-2323 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This is a federal crime punishable by severe fines, imprisonment, or both,” says Rebecca Dmytryk, with WildRescue, one of the groups spearheading this effort. The US Fish & Wildlife Services, who administrate the Migratory Bird Treaty Act under which this act is punishable, has been alerted to these incidents.
Birds were first spotted by the public in August around San Francisco.