NewsSt. Mary Parish


Two birds found oiled from spill at Belle Chasse refinery released at wildlife refuge

oiled bird release_ldwf.JPG
Posted at 1:38 PM, Sep 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-17 14:38:19-04

Two birds have been released from a rehabilitation facility after being found covered in oil following Hurricane Ida.

LDWF shared a video of the release on their Facebook page, which can be viewed below.

The birds were a Purple Gallinule and a King Rail, and were released at Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge on Thursday. They were two of more than 100 birds found oiled at the Alliance Refinery in Belle Chasse sometime after Ida's landfall on August 29. The spill was associated with damage from Ida's path through the area, LDWF said.

Jon Wiebe, a biologist running the state restoration program, said earlier this month that five dead birds had been recovered at the refinery and bagged as evidence.

These are the first two birds from the area to complete rehab and be released, officials say. Over the coming weeks, birds will be rehabilitated at a site in New Iberia prior to their release.

Officials also discovered other wildlife with some degree of oiling, including alligators, river otters, and nutria.

READ MORE: More than 100 oiled birds found from spill in Belle Chasse, LDWF says

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