Red-tailed Tropicbird Voted Top 2022 Patient

Drum roll…The 2022 Patient of the Year is the Red-tailed Tropicbird!

Nicknamed the “Lady Gaga bird” by a TV news reporter, the Tropicbird was a stowaway in March 2022 on a container ship that arrived into the Port of Los Angeles. A crew member heard a noise coming from the ship’s engine room and discovered the unusual stowaway. Beneath black soot was a thin, dehydrated bird.

Thanks to the crew they managed to safely capture the Tropicbird and place them in a box, where they rested until they could reach help. The ship, which had come all the way from South Korea, anchored at the Port of Los Angeles Harbor, and the captain gave International Bird Rescue’s Los Angeles wildlife center a call.

These exotic waterbirds are not often seen by people because they rarely forage for fish within sight of land, and they nest on offshore islands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Read more about her case here.

The 187 total votes for our patients included the following:

1. 35.5% Red-tailed Tropicbird
2. 26.3% Nazca Booby
3. 23.7% Snowy Plover chick
4. 14.5% Double-crested Cormorant chicks

In care, the Tropicbird was highlighted by Hailey Winslow of Fox 11 Los Angeles, who called her “Lady Gaga” in a bigger feature about our bird saving efforts: “Earth Day 2022: Learn about the International Bird Rescue in San Pedro.”