We are currently responding to an oil spill of unknown origin off the San Mateo County coast. We would appreciate it if birders encountering oiled (live or dead) birds on the beaches would notify the Oiled Wildlife Care Network at (707) 207-0380 so that we can respond. The Dept of Fish and Game is in touch with them.
So far we have collected several hundred birds, mostly COMMON MURRES. Birds have come in from Pt. Reyes to Monterey, with most from the areas s. of Half Moon Bay. Perhaps of most interest to birders have been 1 ANCIENT MURRELET (freshly dead at Moss Landing State Beach ― outer coast) and 1 PEREGRINE FALCON (dead and banded, found in San Mateo Co. I believe; may not be spill-related).
Also, any Common Murres seen sitting on jettys, sand, or even iceplant should be looked at closely, as these are probably moribound birds. The oil on these birds is typically limited to the belly.
Please forward this to the Monterey birds email group.
Steve Hampton, Ph.D.
Office of Spill Prevention and Response
California Dept of Fish and Game
PO Box 944209
Sacramento, CA 94244-2090
(916) 323-4724 phone
(916) 324-8829 fax