Oiled Wildlife Care Network

Oil Spill Glossary

Anesthetized – When animals are given medicine to put them temporarily to sleep

Bill – Another term for a bird’s beak

Blubber – A thick fat layer between the skin and muscle of marine mammals

Cetaceans – Aquatic mammals, including whales, dolphins, and porpoises

Conditioning – After cleaning, helping an animal get normal again so it is ready to go back into the wild, the final step in rehabilitation before release

Gills – The respiratory organ on fish; helps the fish obtain oxygen from water

Hatchling – A young bird, reptile, or fish that has recently emerged from an egg

Hypothermic – A body temperature below normal

Ingest – To take into the body; eat

Mammal – an animal that has fur and feeds its young milk, such as humans, dogs, cats, cows, and deer

Mollusk – An invertebrate that usually has a shell, such as clams

Organs – A part of the body that has a specific function, such as the lungs, kidneys, and heart

Pinniped – Fin-footed marine mammals, including seals, sea lions, and walruses

Preening – Using the bill to move feathers around; grooming

Prey – An animal that is hunted as food by a predator

Spawning – Depositing eggs into the water

Stabilization – Where an animal is kept safe and cared for until they are stronger and can move to the next step in rehabilitation

Transport – to move an animal from one place to another

Waterproof – Water can’t get to the skin