Hammond is helping birds harmed by the gulf oil spill by opening its Oiled Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in the old 84 Lumber building (84 Pride Dr, Hammond). It may seem odd to have a bird rescue center located away from the action, so to speak, but its location near the airport and away from possible hurricane zones makes it the perfect place to help clean off and nurse gull, pelicans, egrets and other birds affected by the BP oil spill.
The old 84 Lumber building was chosen because the seven acre property allowed for expansion, if needed. Also, its location so close to the Hammond Northshore Regional Airport but away from the possible distraction of city noise made it the perfect place for these traumatized birds to recover. The former special order bays have now been turned into exam rooms, the warehouse houses the intensive care tents for the birds that are seriously injured and cages are set up around the exterior of the building for the birds that have been cleaned and are waiting to be sent on to their next home.
Right now, the rescue center is treating just over 500 birds. However, it is equipped to help up to 3,000, if necessary. This is only a small portion of the 1643 live and 3271 dead birds found and collected by rescue workers since the oil spill began. Most of these birds have come from Louisiana.
When birds are covered with oil, they have trouble cleaning themselves. If they can't clean themselves, the stress causes them to quit eating or drinking which then leads to dehydration, exhaustion and eventual death. Hypothermia can set in because the oil makes it hard for their internal body temperature to regulate.
If you're interested in finding out how you can help, please visit the International Bird Rescue Research Center website. I'm happy that Hammond helps birds harmed by the gulf oil spill. It shows what a wonderful, helpful community Hammond is.