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Help needed to cope with hundreds of seabirds sickened by mystery illness

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SBWC
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Pelicans in care at Santa Barbara Wildlife Center

One wildlife center explains how they’re trying to cope with an influx of sick and emaciated pelicans on the Central and South Coasts.

It’s not known why so many brown pelicans are being found emaciated, weak and hypothermic recently.

180 of the birds have been rescued and treated within the last week, by the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network (SBWCN) – with many more reports of deceased pelicans all over Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties.

They'd usually receive around 100 birds in a year, Ariana Katovich from SBWCN told KCLU.

"For us to get 180 in a week is very unusual," she said.

"I wish I could tell you why this is happening, we haven't gotten any confirmation yet. All we can do is give them the support of care that they need and that seems to be working for the majority of them," she said.

The Center is appealing for help with blankets, sheets and financial donations to cope with the influx.