Unalaska Storm Coats Birds In Ice

A storm sweeping through Unalaska Tuesday brought freezing spray that coated everything in town with a thick layer of ice – including the birds.

That was Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory professor Reid Brewer.  He’s rescued several disoriented seabirds wandering around town today.  He says it’s unclear whether they were on the ground and got coated by ice or were beaten out of the sky by the freezing rain, but either way, they were stuck, unable to get back to the water.

Brewer says he consulted with the Anchorage branch of the International Bird Rescue and Research Center to figure out what to do with the ice-logged birds.  They recommended putting them back in the ocean, as long as they weren’t injured.

But the Center’s Director Emeritus Jay Holcomb says this is a highly unusual event.  He says while it’s common to have birds grounded by storms,

he’s never heard of birds getting coated in ice.

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