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Dead, oiled bird found along Yellowstone River

Asphalt washed up on shore
Courtesy of Unified Command
Asphalt washed up on shore

All ten train cars that fell into the Yellowstone River a week ago near Reed Point, are now out.

Unified Command has confirmed that the last railcar in the river, containing sulfur, along with the bridge steel from the middle span was removed lSunday evening.

Yellowstone Public Radio’s Orlinda Worthington updates us on what's next for the river… and wildlife.

15-hundred pounds of asphalt have been collected from the Yellowstone River as of Monday afternoon.

Beth Archer, with the Environmental Protection Agency

says teams are now focusing their efforts on continued downstream assessment and adding additional resources to cleanup efforts.

“Since we have removed those cars there is no potential for any additional materials in the river either the sulfur or those asphalt materials, she said.”

A team from the Oiled Wildlife Care Network found one dead bird on Sunday. A killdeer covered with asphalt.

Michael Ziccardi, is the agency director. He says asphalt is the main wildlife concern for this incident.

“Mainly because of the external coating on animals. In particular with birds if they become externally coated it can cause the waterproofing problems on them and so they can’t stay out in the natural environment especially if they’re water birds like ducks and some of the other species, Ziccardi said.”

Ziccardi says other wildlife they’ve seen seem to be in good shape. His team will continue to scour the river bank until cleanup efforts end.

Anyone with information about oiled wildlife is asked to call the Response Hotline at 888-ASK-O-W-C-N. (888-275-6926).

Orlinda Worthington hosts “Morning Edition” weekdays on YPR. She brings 20 years of experience as Montana television news anchor, producer, and reporter.