The Western Bay and ARRC Wildlife Trusts are urging the public to be aware of seabirds washing up on Bay of Plenty shores.

Julia Graham, Western Bay Wildlife Trust chairperson, said there was a mass seabird mortality with many dead or dying birds being washed up on the beach.

"Many of these are juveniles that cannot survive in this rough weather and episodes of mass die-off are a natural course of events," she said.

Graham said the Western Bay and ARRC Wildlife Trusts were handling exceptionally high volumes of birds needing care.

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"Our volunteers work long hours and do everything that they can but we are extremely stretched and we need your help."

How you can help our wildlife

-Please leave dying birds on the beach. This is nature taking its course, and even the best medical care rarely facilitates survival, especially since many of this birds become very stressed in captivity

-If the bird is alert and uninjured, it is best to leave it alone to recover

-If the bird is under threat because of dogs in the vicinity, please use a towel to cover its wings and beak (be careful as sharp beaks can inflict serious injuries) and place it in a cardboard box. These birds may be taken to Holistic Vets / ARRC Wildlife Trust at 56 Fraser Street between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays and between 9 and 12 pm on Saturdays or contact Western Bay Wildlife Trust. Overnight please keep them in a quiet place. If they don't survive, this is nature's course

-Over the weekend volunteers can be contacted until 5 pm on their designated after-hours numbers

-Please keep your dogs off the beach so as not to stress the birds and also to minimise the possibility of your dog becoming ill or injured