Commend Wildlife Center for Saving Seabirds


Target: Cape Wildlife Center

Goal: Commend the Cape Wildlife Center for its innovative seabird rehabilitation

The Cape Wildlife Center in Barnstable, Massachusetts has been rehabilitating sick, injured, and abandoned wildlife since 2000. This animal-friendly institution cares for all manner of wildlife in the Cape Cod area, but it recently constructed an innovative pool that caters specifically to injured seabirds. The Cape Wildlife Center needs to be commended for its imaginative and caring efforts.

Seabirds can be loosely defined as any number of species of bird that spend most or some of their time in saltwater. A seabird’s feathers are vital to its survival and to its quality of life; with damaged feathers, a seabird in the wild is unable to bear cold ocean waters and will most likely drown or die of hypothermia. Unfortunately, many seabirds do injure their feathers in wounds sustained from abandoned fishing lines and nets, natural predators, or rough strandings caused by ocean storms. Disease, litter, and pollution can also harm seabirds and send them to rehabilitation sanctuaries for aid.

Seabirds are extremely sensitive animals and they have specific rehabilitation needs, part of which is a short window of opportunity in which they can be healed. In order to tend to the unique rehabilitation needs of wounded seabirds in its care, the Cape Wildlife Center built an innovative hydrotherapy pool that hastens the healing process of seabirds. According to one report, this hydrotherapy pool “provides a constant stream of cleansed water, which quickly removes contaminants, speeds waterproofing of the seabirds’ feathers, and helps to reduce stress.” This rehabilitation process allows injured seabirds to heal and return to the wild as quickly as possible.

The hydrotherapy pool has been a success, as it has already helped rehabilitate and return to the wild a number of seabirds, including common mergansers, thick-billed murres, and red-necked grebes. Sign the petition below to commend the Cape Wildlife Center for its own unique seabird rehabilitation methods.


Dear Cape Wildlife Center,

I recently heard about the hydrotherapy pool you are using to help rehabilitate injured seabirds, and I wanted to write to commend you on your innovative and caring actions. Seabirds are a precious part of our planet’s diverse wildlife, but, unfortunately, many of them become injured due to natural predators and diseases as well as man-made threats like toxic pollution and abandoned fishing lines and other litter. With injuries to their plumage, seabirds cannot stand the cold ocean waters and often perish from hypothermia or drowning.

Thanks to wonderful organizations like the Cape Wildlife Center, however, injured seabirds are able to be rehabilitated and returned to the wild. Again, I applaud your efforts of imaginative and compassionate seabird rehabilitation. You are truly a model for other seabirds sanctuaries to learn from.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Alastair Rae via Wikimedia Commons

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