Although it has been operational for more than 1.5 years, on 23 October the Wildlife Rescue Centre Ostend was formally opened by Prince Laurent of Belgium and the City of Ostende. Sea Alarm was also invited and presented its booth at the opening.
To European standards, the WRC is a unique facility as it has been developed using the experience from the world’s finest oiled wildlife response centres. Whereas the infrastructure of the building is used for day to day activities for the rehabilitation of birds and small wildlife, in less than 12 hours it can be re-organised to support the response to an oiled wildlife incident with up to a few thousand casualties. The establishment of the WRC, for which rough plans had been circulating for years, was boosted by the Tricolor incident in which over 4600 live casualties came ashore in Belgium alone.