Ralph Heath–zoologist and founder of the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary

Ralph Heath–the zoologist who in 1971 founded the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary in Indian Shores, Florida, the largest wild bird hospital and sanctuary in the U.S., which will be a pivotal operation in cleaning and treating the birds affected by the Gulf oil disaster in Florida (and perhaps beyond)– 

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Ralph Heath & Duncan Strauss in the WMNF studios

–discusses the history of the Sanctuary, including its very first rescue; outlines the triage process for rescuing, cleaning and treating the birds afflicted by the Gulf oil debacle; responds to the prominent theory, based on multiple studies, that the stress of rescuing and cleaning the birds is more detrimental to the birds’ health than the oil itself; discusses the concern that’s growing as the Gulf oil spill is–that the rescued and cleaned birds that survive can’t really be released, because those birds would just get newly-soaked with oil; addresses volunteer opportunities to help the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary with this bird clean-up effort (which requires hazardous material training) and to financially contribute, and more. [www.SeabirdSanctuary.com]

COMEDY CORNER: Tom Shillue “Animal Shows” (snippet) (www.TomShillue.com)

MUSIC: David Grisman’s “Dawg Bull,” Daniel McDougal’s “Big Black Dog,” instrumentals

NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE: The Beatles’ “Blackbird”


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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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