Mystery Deepens Over Oil-soaked Birds

Bird population plummets along Norway coast.

Published: 05-Mar-2003

The oil-soaked seabirds were first discovered on the beaches of Jaeren, south of Stavanger. A Coast Guard plane and vessel were immediately launched to search for an offshore oil slick, but none was found.

During the weekend, up to 100 more dead birds were found farther north, along the coasts of Sunnmoere and Romsdal. Most of them were from the family of narrow-beaked seabirds called lomvier (common guillemot). Puffins and gulls have also been injured or found dead.

On the island of Ona outside Romsdal, at least 50 oil-soaked birds washed up on shore, with little chance of surviving.

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