Riverhead Foundation Rescue Team Heads to Gulf
The Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation has deployed rescue team members to the Gulf of Mexico to aid in wildlife recovery efforts. At the request of The National Marine Fisheries Service and the Wildlife Branch of the Incident Command Center for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the Riverhead Foundation rescue team has been sent to render assistance with general operations and rescue activities. Riverhead Foundation staff biologists, trained in Incident Command, Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) and marine mammal and sea turtle vessel and aerial survey techniques, will provide support for surveillance and on water recovery efforts currently being employed to rescue oil impacted wildlife. Robert DiGiovanni Jr., Foundation Executive Director and Julika Wocial, Rescue Program Supervisor arrived in the Gulf yesterday morning and will be supplemented by additional staff members from the Riverhead Foundation as recovery operations continue. Charles Bowman , President of the Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation said, “The Riverhead Foundation is pleased to have an opportunity to provide expert assistance associated with the environmental crisis in the Gulf of Mexico, which is severely impacting marine life.”
According to the Deepwater Horizon Response Consolidated Fish and Wildlife Collection Report for July 7, 2010 a total number of 447 dead sea turtles have washed ashore in the Gulf and 157 have been recovered alive and transported to local Gulf aquariums for treatment. Most of the live sea turtle recoveries have come from on water surveillance operations which will be the primary objective of the Riverhead Foundation rescue program biologists.
The Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation is New York State’s only authorized marine mammal and sea turtle rescue and rehabilitation facility. While biologists are deployed to the Gulf of Mexico, a team at the hospital facility will be continuing rescue efforts for New York State’s sick or injured marine mammals and sea turtles.
If you would like more up-to-date information about the Gulf, visit http://www.deepwaterhorizonresponse.com/go/doctype/2931/55963
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