International Bird Rescue (IBR) and the Animal Legal Defense Fund have now posted a $10,000 reward to find those responsible for the recent, high-profile mutilation of a protected California Brown Pelican in Long Beach.
On Sunday, the pelican, nicknamed “Pink” for the colored leg band the adult bird was assigned upon arrival at IBR’s Los Angeles center, successfully underwent the first of what likely will be multiple surgeries to repair a severe pouch laceration caused by a sharp object.
IBR veterinarian Dr. Rebecca Duerr performed the three-hour procedure assisted by Los Angeles center rehabilitation staff.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) currently is seeking information on this federal crime, which is punishable by a fine of up to $15,000 and a jail sentence of up to six months. Anyone with information that might lead to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the mutilation of this bird should contact USFWS at 310-328-1516. Tips may be given anonymously.
The $10,000 reward is made possible in part by the California-based Animal Legal Defense Fund, which has posted $5,000 of the total reward amount in addition to support offered from concerned citizens.
On April 16, Pink was found and captured by Long Beach Animal Care Services at the 5400 block of Ocean Boulevard in Long Beach before transfer to IBR’s Los Angeles center in nearby San Pedro. The laceration ran all the way around this animal’s pouch, and as a result Pink was unable to self-feed. The center team placed temporary staples in the pouch to allow the bird to eat sardines and stabilize pending surgery. Read more on the bird via IBR’s blog.
IBR depends on the support of the public to care for animals injured in cruelty incidents, as well as those harmed by fishing wound and other human-caused injuries. To make a donation, please visit birdrescue.org.