First clean swans released after Rotterdam oil leak

Hundreds of swans covered in oil after a spill in the Derde Petroleum port in Rotterdam, 24 June 2018
Hundreds of swans covered in oil after a spill in the Derde Petroleum port in Rotterdam, 24 June 2018. (Photo: @POL_Feijenoord / Twitter)

The first 41 of after an oil spill in the port of Rotterdam three weeks ago, were released again on Saturday. After the oil leak, the swans spent weeks in a temporary shelter on Maeslantkering in Hoek van Holland, being cleaned and recuperating. More swans will be released in the coming weeks, RTL Nieuws reports

The oil spill was caused by an in the Derde Petroleum port. The Dutch Safety Board is

Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen of Infrastructure and Water Management praised and thanked the volunteers who helped catch, clean and heal the affected swans. "I am glad that the first swans are flying again. A deep bow to the volunteers and specialists", she said, according to the broadcaster.

The swans are being released at special points in the Benedenrivierengebied, selected by specialists and Staatsbosbeheer. They looked at water quality, food availability, shipping traffic, and the amount of recreation when picking release locations. The released swans can join new groups of swans in the area. According to Rijkswaterstaat, it is not impossible that some of the swans will return to the port of Rotterdam on their own. 

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