National Zoo Sends Veterinarians To Gulf Region | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

National Zoo Sends Veterinarians To Gulf Region

Play associated audio
The Roseate Spoonbill (seen here at D.C.'s National Zoo) is one of the birds being affected by the Gulf oil slick.
The Roseate Spoonbill (seen here at D.C.'s National Zoo) is one of the birds being affected by the Gulf oil slick.

By Rebecca Sheir

Veterinarians from the National Zoo are heading to the Gulf of Mexico to help rescue birds affected by the oil slick.

It's part of a government-wide response to the worst oil leak in US history.

Of all the feathered denizens in the National Zoos birdhouse, one seems to grab visitors attention the most: the Roseate Spoonbill.

As acting bird curator Dan Boritt explains, the bird is native to the Gulf region.

"The Roseate Spoonbills are very large pink birds with a spoon-shaped bill that roam around the tidal flats, looking for small invertebrates and what not in the water," says Boritt.

But now that the water is slick with crude, veterinarians from various federal agencies are heading to the Gulf to help save the Spoonbill and other Gulf-dwelling creatures.

The National Zoos director, Dennis Kelly, says the Zoo is sending four vets, who "will be closely working with the bird releases that are going on, after the birds have been found and cleaned, and released back in to safety."

The Zoo also has 50 volunteers on standby, ready to assist with cleaning efforts. Because as both Kelly and Boritt point out, even after the oil is capped, the spills effect on wildlife could be felt for years to come.

NPR

Investigating The Drug Trade In 'Cartel Land'

A new documentary tells a riveting story of the way power and violence intersect along the Arizona border and in embattled Michoacan, Mexico.
NPR

Why The World Might Be Running Out Of Cocoa Farmers

West African cocoa farmers earn less than $1 a day. Those low wages could jeopardize the future of chocolate labor, as young farmers find better opportunities to earn a living, a new report warns.
NPR

Donald Trump Controversy Highlights Influence Of Hispanics In U.S.

NPR's Rachel Martin speaks with Felix Sanchez, chairman and co-founder of the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, about Republican presidential candidate Trump's remarks on Mexican immigrants.
NPR

Pilot In Solar-Powered Plane Sets Aviation Record

André Borschberg, flying Solar Impulse 2, set a new record of 120 hours in the cockpit on a journey from Japan to Hawaii.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.