1. ITV Report

Seabirds covered in oil rescued off the North East coast

The seabirds were found covered in an unknown oily substance Credit: RSPCA

More than 20 seabirds have been found covered in some kind of oil on the North East and Yorkshire coastline.

They've been rescued by the RSPCA from a number of sites, from Amble to Redcar.

Guillemots, puffins, razorbills and gulls have all been affected. Members of the public spotted some on Sunday (17 September) and since then, the RSPCA have been finding more that need rescuing.

The RSPCA say they do not know what the oily substance is or where it is coming from but some birds have died from the trauma.

The birds need to be cleaned with fairy liquid to improve their chances of survival Credit: RSPCA

We’re getting them to local vets where they are being rehydrated and stabilised then they are being taken to our closest specialist wildlife centre in Cheshire, RSPCA Stapeley Grange. The birds will be cleaned with fairy liquid which will hopefully remove the oil from the seabirds feathers, which will mean they can remain waterproofed when finally released.

Without waterproofing they will die as they will be unable to keep warm. We are hoping they can be cleaned up and returned as quick as possible once signed off by the Stapeley team.

– Jaqui Miller, RSPCA inspector