County sees increase in beached seabirds after last storm

The Blue-Footed Booby is one of many beached seabirds the San Diego Humane Society has been caring for after the recent rainy weather. Photo by San Diego Humane Society.

SAN DIEGO — Recent rainfall has led to an influx of seabirds washing ashore and becoming beached along San Diego’s coast, the San Diego Humane Society said Friday.

The organization’s Project Wildlife program, which focuses on animal rehabilitation and conservation, has recently cared for multiple seabirds, including loons, western grebes and a blue-footed booby who became beached during periods of high surf and stormy weather.

Seabird diets are also affected by rainfall as vacillating ocean temperatures cause their food sources to dive deeper than normal. Consequently, the birds are often too weak to get past strong coastal waves into the open ocean. Humane Society animal care staff recently transferred their rescued birds to SeaWorld for further rehabilitative care.

Residents are advised to contact a lifeguard, the Humane Society’s Humane Law Enforcement division at 619-299-7012, ext. 1, or SeaWorld at 800-541-7325 if they see a beached or struggling seabird. Birds that are in immediate danger can also be wrapped in a towel and brought to Project Wildlife, located at 5433 Gaines St.

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