Over 40 birds killed, others injured in fire at Carolina Waterfo - | WBTV Charlotte

Over 40 birds killed, others injured in fire at Carolina Waterfowl Rescue

Caroline Hicks | WBTV Caroline Hicks | WBTV
(John Sparks/WBTV) (John Sparks/WBTV)
INDIAN TRAIL, NC (WBTV) -

Over 40 birds were killed when a fire broke out at the Carolina Waterfowl Rescue in Indian Trail Sunday night.

According to their Facebook page, the fire started in the electrical outlet of a bird room that was connected to a barn on the facility. A spokesperson with the nonprofit said 40 birds were killed in the fire. Volunteers noticed smoke coming from a building adjacent to the barn around 6:30 p.m., according to the spokesperson. 

"I notice what look like steam coming off the top of the barn,” said Troy Tomlisnson, a volunteer. “We opened every door we could get to and just started pushing birds out the door.”

Union County Fire Marshal Kevin Rigoli said the fire was caused by an electrical issue with chords leading to the heat lamps. 

The nonprofit said 50 other birds were affected in the incident and were "fighting for their lives." The birds were being treated for burns and smoke inhalation. 

“It is tough because we lost a few animals that we consider family,” said Tomlinson

The rescue said their building is completely unstable. 

The staff said that they were able to save some of the animals' lives thanks to the help of volunteers. 

"I do just want to say that we have some absolutely incredible volunteers here. Our closing staff went above and beyond tonight and saved a lot of lives they started working well before the fire department got there. Thank you to everyone who showed up to help."

We want to say thank you to Companion Parrots Re-homed for immediately coming and picking up all of our parrots. We had recently taken in 64 Birds and had quite a few left. They all made it out safely thanks for the quick action of our volunteers. We are going to try to find rescues to take them and finish their Rehabilitation.

Izzie's Pond also drove straight here to pick up ducks and help us out. That's a five hour round-trip drive for them.

Thanks to everyone who brought oxygen tonight you saved lives!! Last but not least Dr Sonia Borrell from Waxhaw Animal Hospital who came out and helped us triage and treat all of the fire victims. And also thanks is to whoever brought us food to eat, it was my dinner and it was vegan, a blessing to many of us!!

The rescue is asking for donations so that they can try to cover the cost of some medical expenses and building repairs. Staff members posted saying their were specifically looking for oxygen concentrators.

“365 days a year, rain, sleet, snow, sunshine, we are here for these birds,” said Joyce Gehring, a volunteer. “We are all invested in these animals and they are part of our family because we see them day in and day out.”

The fire caused nearly $10,000 to $15,000 in damages. 

“It is times like this that people come together and pull through and that is what we will continue to do,” said Gehring. 

The rescue is asking that donations be made through Paypal.me/waterfowlrescue or donations@cwrescue.org

“If we have the money we can use it to buy the things we need right then and there,” said Tomlinson. 

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