The issue of euthanasia within a wildlife response plan was recently examined in the Netherlands. Hugo Nijkamp (Sea Alarm) accompanied the North Sea Directorate, the national authority for oil spill and oiled wildlife response, to a specialist company in Amsterdam that deals with large scale euthanasia of poultry. Devices for the euthanasia of birds by means of CO2 were examined.
After consultation with different animal welfare organisations and wildlife rehabilitators in the Netherlands, Belgium and the UK, positive advice was given about the use of CO2 euthanasia in case of an oiled wildife incident in the Netherlands. Sea Alarm has encouraged the inclusion of a special section on mass euthanasia in the plan, which would provide guidance in the event that an overwhelming number of casualties arrived on shores following an oil spill.
It is expected that the official wildlife response plan for the Netherlands will be signed in April 2009. Sea Alarm has been involved in the revision committee during the development of the this plan.
Sea Alarm is still closely involved in the activities of the Netherlands Foundation for Oiled Birds Rehabilitation (Stichting Olievogels Nederland – SON), which Sea Alarm recently helped establish. Sea Alarm attends the meetings of the organisation, which are held twice a year.