Oiled birds. Pile of birds lying on a sandy beach, killed by an oil spill at sea. A clean-up crew stand in the background with a mechanical digger. Sea birds are poisoned by the oil because they ingest it whilst cleaning their feathers with their beaks. The detergents used to disperse oil slicks are also poisonous to wildlife. The mechanical digger was used to scoop oil off the beach's surface into pits where it could be pumped out and taken away. These birds were contaminated by a spill of about 70,000 tonnes of crude oil from the Sea Empress off the coast of Milford Haven, Wales, in February 1996. Photographed on Pendine Sands, Carmarthen Bay, Wales.
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