The International Bird Rescue (IBR) in San Pedro celebrated World Animal Day on Oct. 2 by inviting two avid animal-loving actors to learn first-hand the behind-the-scenes steps it takes to rescue, rehab and release an injured or oiled bird.
Rolling up their sleeves were Entourage’s Adrian Grenier and Keegan Allen of Pretty Little Liars.
Allen showed his passion for the environment and the work of the IBR. “These animals have no way of fixing what has happened to them,” he said. “Our ecosystem is being so messed up and so many of these accidents and spills could be avoided. Our oceans and wildlife mean so much. We can’t keep destroying it.”
A large spill off the coast of San Francisco in 1971 devastated sea bird populations – that eco-catastrophe was the impetus for the founding of the IBR.
Back then, animal rehabilitators did not know the best procedure for removing oil, but armed later with a grant, volunteers tested a variety of products and discovered that Dawn dishwashing detergent was the most effective.
“Finding Dawn was a key puzzle piece in our mission,” said Andrew Harmon of the IBR.”We were able to lay the foundation for oiled bird rescue here and internationally.”
Since its inception, IBR has helped clean-up 200 oil spills in six continents, most recently volunteers traveled to the massive Gulf Coast oil spill.
Grenier and Keegan met with IBR volunteers and staff and assisted Dr. Becky Duerr as she examined two current patients: a California brown pelican and an eared grebe, both with broken wings.
Later, the pair helped IBR volunteer Maired McGuirk feed recuperating grebes a krill, night smelt and meal worms of in an outdoor water enclosure.
Finally, the young actors headed to a nearby ocean beach and had the honors of opening the doors for a California brown pelican, a brown-footed boobie and a group of young seagulls.
Cheers went up as the birds re-entered the sky and swooped up and over the crowds.The pelican found fellow-feathered friends on a nearby rock-cropping; some seagulls had to be encouraged to explore the ocean waters.
“Some of these [gulls] came here as youngsters and didn’t have the ocean experience yet,” said IBR photographer Bill Steinkamp. “This is a whole new world for them.”
People can view Dawn’s Virtual Volunteer videos for a firsthand perspective on a day in the life of a volunteer rescue worker helping save oiled animals in need.
* Lead photo taken by Brenda Rees/That’s IT Mommy.
* We were invited to the animal release in San Pedro for editorial purposes.This will in no way sway our opinion of the product or service. The review is in our own words and is our opinion.