Retrieved, Restored, Released

South Devon Seabird Trust

Specialising in the Rescue, Treatment and Rehabilitation of

Oiled Seabirds

Established in 1983 by Jean Bradford MBE

Bridled Guillemot  Photo by Colin Wilmshurst

Most of the sea birds we have cared for are guillemots - members of the auk family.  

These are some of the questions asked by those people who have no knowledge concerning the treatment and care of oiled seabirds:-

a)  Can oiled seabirds be rescued?

b) How do you care for oiled seabirds?

c) Do oiled seabirds survive treatment? 


a) Our answer to the first question is YES, oiled seabirds can be rescued. 

b) The second question can be answered by looking at our Rehabilitation Methodology (in PDF) on the 'Care of Oiled Seabirds' page of this web site which goes into great detail about what is required. 

c) The answer to the third most asked question is YES, they do survive treatment using the methodology devised and used by this charity, and by ringing our rehabilitated birds we have proved that they are successful.

This charity is second to none in the results it achieves in the care, treatment and rehabilitation of oiled seabirds.  Our aim is, and always has been, to treat each bird as an individual - each one requiring assistance - and each one having the same hope of full recovery and a chance to return to the wild.   This has meant that an average of 74% of the birds admitted into our care have been returned to the wild, and information received back from our ringed birds has provided the proof that they are successful after release.

Auks released by the Trust off the south Devon coast have been found in Shetland, Norway, Scotland, Sweden, Germany, Holland, France, Spain, Belgium, Wales, Channel Islands as well as various places around the coast of England, many of them several years post release.

Rehabilitated guillemots just released at Hopes Nose, South Devon

Rehabilitated Gannets just released.  (Photographed by Colin Wilmshurst)