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USFWS Responds to Mystery Spill in Chicago Waterway
Midwest Region, November 8, 2017
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Biologists from USDA Wildlife Services assist USFWS in rescue of oiled wildlife from Bubbly Creek
Biologists from USDA Wildlife Services assist USFWS in rescue of oiled wildlife from Bubbly Creek - Photo Credit: DNAinfo/Joe Ward

On October 25, 2017, staff from the USFWS Chicago Field Office responded to a report of an oiled Canada goose at Chicago Park #571. When responding to this call the biologist observed oil on Bubbly Creek and the South Branch of the Chicago River and notified the National Response Center of the situation.

The USFWS Chicago Field Office worked with colleagues from the USDA Wildlife Services and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to reduce impacts to wildlife. Birds were hazed away from the contaminated water using mylar flash tape, pyrotechnics, and boat harassment. A live oiled goose and two live oiled turtles were captured and taken to a rehabilitation center. Other oiled birds were observed (Canada goose and great blue heron) but responders were unable to capture them. One dead Canada goose, one dead ring-billed gull, and four dead turtles, along with more than 40 dead fish, were collected and preserved as evidence.

The source of the contamination remains unknown at this time. No responsible party has been identified, but the spill investigation is continuing.


Contact Info: Louise Clemency, 847-381-2253, louise_clemency@fws.gov
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