Update from the center of Gulf oiled bird care

The numbers of severely oiled birds jumped yesterday and Jay Holcomb returns with his updates from the BP Gulf Oil Spill wildlife response:

Well, I am sure by now you have all seen the pictures of the oiled birds that were captured in Grand Isle, Louisiana. We are busy today with those birds and I have been delinquent in writing current blog postings. I will begin again tonight and keep you all updated. 

Please know that we are all doing well here, unhappy like you that this is happening, but we have a great master plan to offset as much damage to the birds as we can. For those of you who are asking about ways that you can either support us or donate to us, I thank you for your generosity. I also want you all to understand that this entire oiled bird rehabilitation effort is being paid for by BP. This is appropriate as they are the Responsible Party for this spill.

If you would like to send donations then please keep in mind that your local wildlife rehabilitation organization really needs your help also. They care for the same wild animals that are being impacted by the spill. A pelican is a pelican whether is it tangled in fishing tackle or oiled! Please send support to your local wildlife rehabilitation organizations. You can also support IBRRC and Tri-State’s ongoing bird rehabilitation efforts if you like and that information is available on our web sites.

Talk to you very soon,

– Jay Holcomb, IBRRC Executive Director from Fort Jackson, Louisiana

International Bird Rescue is working with the main responder, Tri-State Bird Rescue of Delaware. IBRRC more than 20 response team members on the ground including veterinarians, wildlife rehabilitation managers and facilities and capture specialists.

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 died.

At least 40 million gallons of crude has been dumped into the Gulf of Mexico and harmed fragile breeding grounds for Brown Pelicans and other shorebirds. Six weeks after the blow out, BP has yet to significantly stem the flow in the nation’s worst oil disaster.

34 thoughts on “Update from the center of Gulf oiled bird care”

  1. The new pictures are so heartbreaking. What is the best way someone can help? My family has a beach home in the Florida panhandle, so my family can be in the area to help. I also have blog, and some web design experience. Is there anything I can do that would be of help? I know you have tons of people asking. If there is any even small thing that would be helpful to you guys working so hard down there, please let me know. I also run the newsletter and website for a large homeschooling association and would be glad to pass on any info that would be helpful. Thank you for all the work you're doing. These sea critters are so close to my heart, and it is so comforting to know that you are doing all you can to help as many as possible. God bless you.

  2. It is amazing to me that even after being "oiled" that a pelican can still smile. And it is one of the sweetest birds I have ever seen. All you have to do is look at their eyes and see that they are precious in His sight. And I was watching the video of them being cleaned and how they take it so very well. We could learn a lot from watching them. Love a pelican, wont' you?

  3. Can IBRRC please clarify what you mean when you state that “this entire oiled bird rehabilitation effort is being paid for by BP.” We're from a wildlife center that was specifically told when we were asked to register our paraprofessionals to come and help that we'd be responsible for all our expenses.

  4. Glad to hear that BP cash is presently supporting the animal rescue efforts (I presume you're actually seeing the cash and not just getting lip service from BP).

    Since you don't need the $$ plus I'm too far from the GOM and not a trained wildlife rescuer, is there any other role that I can play? For example, I can write a letter to my Congressional representatives and Senators– if needed to overcome any roadblocks.

    Just let me know.

    Thanks for all that you're doing!


  5. I was visiting your website to learn more about your organization. I am heart broken and deeply disturbed about the damage that is being done in the Gulf region as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
    I want to do my part to help rehabilitate the wildlife effected by this disaster.

    I want to thank you for your open honesty about BP paying for the rehabilitation efforts and for your encouragement to donate to my local wildlife rehabilitation organization.

    That is integrity, and as such, I will still be making a donation to your organization.

    Thank you for what you are doing to help the wildlife in the Gulf region.

    Columbia, SC

  6. You are doing a tremendous job taking care of an abominal situation. Sure hope BP is paying for this–it was their fault!!!!

    Where can I get a Love a Pelican tee?

  7. This is just breaking my heart. It is frustrating to see the wildlife and the people that this is affecting. Thank you to all of you whom are helping with the birds. I live in Southern New Jersey and hope that things look better before the fall migration brings more birds back your way.

  8. PLEASE – Did anyone pluck the little bird overturning in the surf out? Is there any way it made it to a center to at least be euthanized? If it's still alive, I will believe there is a God…
    Or the other heavily dripping small bird?
    Or the 3 that the woman caught in a net so oiled I didn't even realize it WAS a net and passed in a cardboard box to a man by her boat?
    Is there any way to combat oil in their lungs?
    Thank you.

  9. man, i envy your firsthand involvement with saving the wildlife. ohhh, how i wish i had studied animal biology instead of art 🙂

    THANK YOU Jay & crew!!!! it has been SUCH a relief to learn about the significant success of your efforts and how much you guys have improved the process over the years.

    i believe people are becoming increasingly more compassionate about animal welfare and i'm sure MILLIONS of Americans are watching with great admiration and are extremely grateful for you organization and wishing you all the very best throughout this tragedy. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

  10. To further clarify, BP is funding the facilities for the birds, the search and collection efforts, the food/medications for the birds and funding for staff.

  11. Thank you for the update and all you guys are doing. If BP is paying, what else do you need? Volunteers? Can those of us not in the area do something to help?

    Those pelicans look like the most gentle creatures on Earth, just trying to mind their own business. Those eyes! Heart-breaking to see them covered in oil. What do you do with the ones you have cleaned?

    Please know that many, many appreciate what you are doing.

  12. What a fabulous job you are all doing! I just made a donation and have been reading the posts.
    I am a professional nurse with a big heart for wildlife and this disaster is so sad.
    Please tell me how I can help you get the word out for money, supplies anything?
    Will post this blog to my facebook site.

    God Bless you for helping the innocent victims:))


  13. What great work you guys are doing! Hope there are enough of you that there is time for some rest. God, and man bless you.

  14. Thank goodness for the IBRRC's work. We are following your progress daily. You MUST save every bird you can! ~Alexa, Oceans 4Ever

  15. I would like to volunteer hand on helping get these birds cleaned up, how do i go about doing that?

  16. Glad to hear that BP is providing funds to rehab and clean the birds…I was wondering if BP was continually providing funds or if it was a "keep tract of the receipts and we'll reimburse you when this is over" type of thing…

    The emotional toil of the workers cleaning the birds must be something..please tell them us the public support them 1000 percent and that they are in our thoughts and prayers..

  17. The staff of the IBRRC are the real shining stars during this disaster. As an avid Birder, the work that your organization is doing makes me feel much better about what is happening in the Gulf region. Keep up the much inspired work always. Thank you!

  18. Jay, thank you so much all you are going for the birds in the Gulf. The pictures are truly heartbreaking. I heard a segment on NPR on Friday when I was driving home. You indicated one of the birds identified as a Laughing Gull. This little guy has become for the world a haunting image of the horror caused by the oil spill on the environment and the animals. I was elated to hear that you think the little guy is going to make it. Could you please post an update on him and let us know how he is going.

    Thank you also for encouraging people to contribute to their local wildlife rehabilitation centers. I have donated several times to my local rehab center, and have called on them twice with regard to wounded pelicans found on my local beaches.

    Bless you for all you are doing.

  19. What I want to know is, they knew this was coming, why weren't the birds rounded up before the oil hit???????? Seriously!

  20. I saw a story on MSNBC.com where a German naturalist was saying it was more humane to euthanize all oiled birds, just write them off. Jay is quoted in the story as is Rick Steiner. Yet I felt the overall tone of the story was pushing a point of view that we should just let them go. And I wondered if this was the beginning of the push by corporate America to help BP minimize its costs – if no birds are washed and cared for, they save money. Could BP put forward an argument that the bird cleaning is not effective and try to withdraw financial support? Thanks for all your hard work.

  21. My heart go out to all the wild life I want so badly to help I live close to Jacksonville fl,is there any thing that I can do to help? I want so badly for our goverment to start producing corn oil into gasoline and stop bring oil across our oceans!We have more than enough of our own recources here in the us. I am glad that Your orginazation is helping to save the animals that have been harmed from this disaster and I want to thank Everyone who is working so hard to save the animals and our enviroment !!

  22. there are not humans in danger like a natural disaster that would give a thought of such a horrific topic as save or kill the birds, granted youd want to save animals too, but peoples lives would come down to the facts to save first and some animals not by choice would die.

    These animals did not ask for this, with the pelican and others breeding one more day for one more to live to keep the babies alive is a must to the species, and no excuse for the human not to help life.

    also one more day for an adult cleaned to breed again, keeps from extinction, as the mother.. is off getting food and is oiled caught and taken to be saved the babies will not make it without feeding too, thus jeopardising the species. IS BP GOING TO BRING ALL THE DEAD IN WATER AND OUT OF WATER BACK TO LIFE. Land and sea environment. People that died on rig and ones get sick from disaster directly involved and the broken hearted people that are in the world praying for themselves and the world to recover. BP going to pay the smallest youngsters of the families whos lives are directly affected, to school room children across the states, to their pets that get the delicious food scraps from their fishing money making lives that put food on the tables for all their loved ones. WHAT A COMPLETE MESS. FOR WHAT TRYING TO MAKE FRANCHISES LIKE A MACDONALDS OVER HERE IN THE US. drop a load of cash and ill setup you up a non-quality and nonresearched, cut-corned, no employee oil rig in the ocean and you to can be on your way to riches. INSANE FOOLS.

  23. This is heartbreaking to see – god bless the people working to save the wildlife affected by this travesty. The comment that these animals should be put out of their misery is maddening. Humans caused this devastation and we have a moral obligation to do what we can to save the innocent wildlife that are affected. I wish we could be there to help.

  24. hello IBRRC, i live in New Zealand and have just seen you center on the news. i wanted to tell you how much i admire what you're doing for these birds. it is heart-wrenching to see what's happening to them through no fault of their own. keep up the excellent work and know that you've got my support from half a world away. 😀
    (p.s. shame on you BP!!)

  25. Hello Mr. Holcomb,
    Hoping you get this mail. A friend of mine has a device that is easy to use and very efficient for cleaning the pelicans that can help you to clean them. His name is Josh Nelson and he lives in Vermont. His invention is called Washwand. Please email him at washwand@aol.com and instruct him on how he can get the washwand to you in Ft. Lewis. Please keep up the good work as we owe it to the animals to at the least give them a chance at life. Your work makes us know see how much you care and what a wonderful man you are. Most Respectfully, Debora Edholm Costa Rica

  26. Of course we are concerned for the fishermen and their families. BP must take care of these people and their families and their pets too. We realize what this is doing to this beautiful part of the United States. The entire country feels for everyone involved. No one likes this. We all have contributed to this problem by relying heavily on oil. I live in Costa Rica where we do not consume like in the U.S. as in no air conditioning, no use of a clothes dryer. We use very little power and get get our water in the country for the most part from rivers. We plant our foods and we live close to the land. The U.S. has moved away from conserving and waste way too much. Just go and look at a land fill and you will be amazed. They actually can judge the state of economy improving or not based on the amount of trash being increased. Here one would be lucky to find anything usable in the trash because we recycle so much and repair old items. I totally understand your frustrations as I sometimes feel so sad with the state of affairs in my old home country. It is just awful how things are happening as of late. We need to care about our people and families more and get back to the basics. I am glad to see your post as it shows the reality of what is happening to the planet………….

  27. There's a special place, and I mean a SPECIAL PLACE in heaven for the folks at the IBRRC! A heartfelt and sincere THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. There's not enough pride in the world to show how proud I am of you guys. Keep up the good work!

  28. Volunteers Save the Gulf Coast of Mexico

    We need 650,000 volunteers to help save the four States affected by Gulf Oil spill.

    Defence scientists and international engineers can get rid of all the oil in 6 weeks. Federal and State Governments are not helping but local people can save their coast not salvage it.

    All the oil can be transferred to a tanker off the ocean in 6 weeks.

    Affected beaches and animals can be cleaned safely.

    All the oil coming up from the leaking well will be taken away before it gets near the coast.

    Science and engineering and local people can save the coast together.

    We need pickup truck drivers, fishermen, marine engineers, truck drivers, coastal walkers, amateur weather people, surfers, divers, volunteer boat crews and many more needed.

    No one else will deliver the solution so help SAVE THE COAST….DONT SALVAGE IT!

    If you want to know about the jobs and the system, please visit http://www.sossavethegulfcoast.com or contact info@ultragreengroup.com or Facebook 'UltraGreen Brighton'.

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