Oil-covered dead sea birds found on Chesil Beach

A man holding a dead gannet covered in oil PHOTO: Steve Trewhella Gannets and other water feeding birds were found covered in the oil

Related Stories

Dead sea birds covered in oil have been found washed up on Dorset's Jurassic Coast.

About half a dozen birds, including fulmars, gannets and guillemots, were discovered along Chesil Beach, near Portland.

The Environment Agency said it was not investigating the incident but said it was likely that a ship had dumped its engine oil at sea.

The birds were discovered by wildlife photographer Steve Trewhella.

Mr Trewhella said: "It's possible this oil was dumped at sea - it happens a lot.

"The south west winds will have blown it in with litter and other debris. The birds are all ones that feed on the water, such as gannets, fulmars and guillemots.

'Without a thought'

"It's possible they drifted into the oil, or the oil drifted into them - either way, the result is dead birds."

The Environment Agency said it believed the dead birds had been collected and it was likely that any remaining oil would quickly disperse.

A spokesman said ships were known to dump oil from time to time, but it was almost impossible to detect or punish perpetrators.

RSPB spokesman Tony Whitehead said: "It's dreadful when you see things like that - it just goes to show that The Channel is a very busy seaway and it's an issue for sea life.

"People do it without a thought for the wildlife around them and that's a real tragedy and we urge people who use the seaways not to do it."

Mr Whitehead said if members of the public discovered any live birds, they should contact the RSPCA immediately.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Dorset

Weather

Bournemouth

12 °C 7 °C

Features & Analysis

  • Woman in swimming pool Green stuff

    The element that makes a familiar smell when mixed with urine


  • Plane at Shannon airportShannon's call

    The airport that hosted a roll-call of presidents


  • Record playing on turntableVinyl destination

    The eight tribes of people who keep buying records


  • The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at RAAF Amberley airbase near Brisbane on 19 AprilIn pictures

    Fighter jets and screaming crowds for William and Kate


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • ITChild's play

    It's never been easier for small businesses to get their message out to the world

Programmes

  • Tuna and avacadoThe Travel Show Watch

    Is Tokyo set to become the world's gourmet capital?

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.