Archived News

Oiled wildlife rescue centers get new staff

July 21, 2003

The UC Davis-based Oiled Wildlife Care Network, which serves the California coast, has a new director, new volunteer coordinators and two new member organizations.

Photo of Michael Ziccardi, DVM,
at Prestige oil spill, 2002 --
Courtesy of Joan Embery - Pillsbury

The Oiled Wildlife Care Network (OWCN) is an international model for rescuing oiled wildlife. Public agencies and private organizations along the California coast cooperate to recover, treat, rehabilitate and release wildlife injured by spills of oil or other toxins. The network is managed by the UC Davis Wildlife Health Center, a program of the campus' School of Veterinary Medicine. The network is funded by the California Department of Fish and Game's Office of Spill Prevention and Response.

The new network director is UC Davis wildlife veterinarian Michael Ziccardi. Ziccardi, a UC Davis alumnus who has been a network veterinarian since 1997, has supervised the care of thousands of birds, including those oiled last winter in San Francisco Bay and in the spill of the oil tanker Prestige in Spain.

He takes over for UC Davis veterinary researcher Jonna Mazet to give her more time for her work as co-director (with UC Davis veterinary researcher Walter Boyce) of the Wildlife Health Center. Mazet is a leading authority on the care and rehabilitation of oiled wildlife, especially birds and otters.

New volunteer coordinators Sue Campbell and Yvette Hernandez will train and assign the many unpaid helpers who clean, feed and nurse injured animals at the network's regional rescue centers.

The network's two new organizational members are Point Reyes Bird Observatory (recently renamed PRBO Conservation Science) in the San Francisco Bay Area and Wildlife Assist in San Diego County.

This news release was distributed July 21 by Campus News Service.

Media contacts:
* Sylvia Wright, UC Davis News Service, (530) 752-7704
* Michael Ziccardi, Wildlife Health Center, (530) 752-4167