Several very ill and oil-sodden birds have been found on the shore of Sõrve in Saaremaa in the last week
Birdwatcher Mati Martinson wrote on Meie Maa that as of January 30, she has found four or five gulls covered in oil at Sõrve on the beach.
"I have found four or five of them so far, but exactly how many oily birds there are is unknown because some of the weakened birds are also prey to foxes on the beach," Martinson wrote, adding that there does not appear to be a major oil spill nearby.
Oil pollution can only be assumed rather than confirmed, but it has been reported some passing ships have dumped bilge water into the sea and birds could have become exposed to it at sea, it is also being pushed closer to the shore by the wind.
There is little chance of birds being rescued as those who allow themselves to be caught are already so exhausted they cannot be saved. Those who are in better condition usually cannot be caught again.
Editor: Helen Wright