Friday, October 30, 2009

Helping our Pacific Northwest neighbors


Due to a freakish and foamy algal bloom, migratory waterbirds in Washington and Oregon have gotten covered in a foamy slime, and are dying by the thousands.

Animal rescue facilities in the Pacific Northwest are over-loaded, and so they reached out to the International Bird Rescue Research Center in Northern California.

First, one hundred fifty birds were loaded onto a rental truck, and driven to IBRRC, and then the Coast Guard got involved, and flew hundreds more to Sacramento. (I'm unclear on the actual numbers, but it seems to be between three and five hundred.)

I spent the day helping out at IBRRC, and as always, it's quite an operation. I worked with the director of the Penguin Encounter at Sea World in San Diego, who also came in as a volunteer.

(I met one of her penguins, at a party that was thrown to thank the volunteers who worked on the Cosco Busan oil spill. That penguin got its own airplane seat, when it came up from San Diego. And the flight attendants love it when Sea World sends out its penguins. They allow the penguins to walk up and down the aisles of the plane.)

Click here for a video.


Becky said...

Aw, save the birdies! Poor little guys. You are so great for doing that.

I'm enchanted beyond words at the idea of a little penguin being seatbuckled into his seat, and then later being allowed to roam about the cabin. Happy sigh.

Sue KuKu said...

Thank you for posting this and for all the people there helping our birds. It was horrible to open the paper the other day and read about this foam. Horrible, horrible stuff.

The video you posted was great, even though I thought it was going to be a video of the penguin walking on the plane. Darn!

The reporter said it was costing $50,000 to ship birds down there but there was a 99% chance of recovery!! What price, life?

A HS student at my church needed several of us to fill out a survey for a project.

The first question was would you allow a person to die if it meant you would get $10 million? I answered, no, life is worth more than any dollar value.

Same for our feathered friends. A big thank you from a PNWer that people in California are willing to pay and help our birds.

Anonymous said...

I am in the pacific nw, how do I find a location to help at?


. . . Lisa and Robb . . . said...

C -- let us know where you are, and we'll see if we can connect you with a volunteer opportunity.

John and Diane said...

Happy sigh from me too about those penguins roaming around on the airplane. I wonder if they mind being petted, I sure would want to pet one if he wandered by! :-)

Anonymous said...

I am in Tacoma, WA.


Marg said...

I'm so happy you're there to do what I can't! Thank you again.

I posted about the birds (and you) in the TBO Blog-hope that's okay


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