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Brown pelican crisis pushes wildlife groups to breaking point

By Gary Bogue
Monday, February 8th, 2010 at 7:31 am in International Bird rescue research Center, Pelicans.

Brown pelicans at IBRRC. Photo by IBRRC
Pelicans-storms-2010-group-aviary ibrrc

Our friends at International Bird Rescue Research Center in Fairfield have a problem: Too many brown pelicans. IBRRC and three other wildlife rescue centers in Southern California have taken in nearly 500 of the giant starving and wet birds since Jan. 1.  Pelicans take up an enormous amount of care and space and eat huge quantities of fish daily. The end result is the centers have run out of space and funds to care for the birds. They are VERY concerned that they may have to temporarily stop taking in these birds because off their dwindling resources (space, funds).

These organizations need our help in the form of cash donations to help them care for these distressed birds … and they particularly need financial support from the state (Dept. of Fish and Game) and Federal (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) authorities who are ultimately responsible for the pelicans.

Please do what you can to help. Thanks. /Gary

Here is a news release I received from IBRRC on Friday:

Brown pelicans at IBRRC. Photo by IBRRC
Pelicans-storms-2010-group-aviary ibrrc

Four wildlife rescue centers in California have written to State and Federal authorities to request their urgent attention and support in dealing with an unprecedented number of wet, starving adult California Brown Pelicans being recovered from the Central and Southern California coastlines.

With wildlife groups shouldering the cost of care, some are concerned that they may have to temporarily close their doors in order to cope.

To date, the four organizations (International Bird Rescue Research Center, Wetlands & Wildlife Care Center, Pacific Wildlife Care and Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network) have received nearly 500 pelicans since January 1st, creating a severe strain on human and financial resources for each organization. They are now being forced to seriously consider shutting their doors to further casualties in spite of the potential consequences of such a decision to the communities and the wildlife that they serve.

“We feel it is our duty to share this information with the agencies ultimately responsible for these animals and to ask for their help at this critical time,” says Jay Holcomb, IBRRC Director and spokesperson for the Wildlife Groups. “Members of the public are reporting sightings of sick and dying pelicans with increasing frequency and there may be a negative reaction if there is an expectation of care for these birds but no resources to respond.”

The wildlife groups impacted by this situation are asking for financial support as well as involvement by the authorities in developing both a clear strategy for the situation in hand and for the future. They are also asking for the public to support rescue efforts by donating to the organization in your area.

Brown pelicans at IBRRC. Photo by IBRRC
Pelicans-storms-2010-group-aviary ibrrc

Contact information for the four wildlife centers affected is as follows:

*** International Bird Rescue Research Center, San Pedro, Los Angeles and Fairfield, San Francisco Bay,
Media Contact: Paul Kelway – 310-691-9558

*** Wetlands & Wildlife Care Center, Huntington Beach, Orange County,
Media Contact: Debbie McGuire – 714-713-1155

*** Pacific Wildlife Care, San Luis Obispo,
Media Contact: Dani Nicholson – 805-772-9494

*** Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network, Santa Barbara,
Media Contact: Julia Parker – 805-681-1080

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2 Responses to “Brown pelican crisis pushes wildlife groups to breaking point”

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