Mission Statement

The Sea Biscuit Wildlife Shelter cares for injured or orphaned birds. We provide minimum medical care, safety from predators, food and shelter from the elements. When an animal is able to care for itself, it is released to the wild. We do not keep nonreleasable animals nor use heroic methods to sustain the quality of their life. However, the Shelter does make every effort to rehabilitate an endangered species and every animal brought here is treated with respect and caring.

Support our Shelter

We receive no federal or state funding.
The Sea Biscuit relies on donations from the Town of Oak Island, individuals and private businesses. To support the rehabilitation of wild birds, field studies and educational programs, reach us by phone 910-278-7871 or email: seabiscuitshelter@yahoo.com
Send mail to 1638 East Beach Dr, Oak Island, NC 28465

Find us online at


Every year, we are happy to admit at least 50 brown pelicans! They come in waves. The first group is now fledging from our southeastern rookery in the Cape Fear region. These new guys aren’t quite sure how to catch their own fish and often get tangled in fishing nets or hooks and lines. The injuries are easy to repair and they are underway again in a month or two. The second wave is often more difficult to treat. These youngsters ignore the instinct to migrate as the days get shorter and the water gets cooler. When the fishermen quit giving them handouts and the shrimpers aren’t pushing their bycatch overboard, the youngsters grow hungry and aggressive. Many freeze on the docks and piers, not knowing that they’d be better off in the salt water. Frostbite can be lethal.


Nesting season is in full swing! It is that time of year again, one of my personal favorites, when birds begin to pair up, build nests and have young. We are very fortunate to live in a place where nesting season goes on for many months. Owls like the great horned will pair up and begin nesting as early as January, and some of our songbirds like bluebirds will continue nesting into August! Here are some good tips if you find a nesting bird. Keep a respectful distance. Observing the bird quietly can be a wonderful way to see the habits and interactions the adults have with their young. Be aware that new technology like playbacks of audio bird calls can be disturbing to birds especially during nesting season. If a bird hears the call of its species, it will come away from the nest to find where the call is coming from and to defend its territory. Playbacks can disturb a nesting bird, causing the adult to stray from the nestlings instead of paying closer attention to the young. Lastly, always be aware of the effect that your presence is having on the nesting birds. Even if you're watching quietly from a good distance, be prepared to back away or leave entirely if you sense any degree of agitation from the adults or young. By taking the time to watch birds in their natural surroundings in a respectful way, we can experience the excitement of seeing a nesting season unfold while giving the birds the best chance of nesting success!
Jill Peleuses
Photo by Michelle Frazier

What Have We Done in 2014?

We cared for 385 wild birds needing assistance to survive because of human and natural events. Injured or orphaned or diseased, they received the best medical care we could provide.
Our volunteers have logged in over 3900 hours in the clinic - totalling almost $60,000 in unpaid labor. Transporters for short distances (under 25 miles) were valued at $52,000 and long distance, $28,000 for time and mileage expenses. Goods, food and services received were worth over $1000, not including the veterinarian contributions totaling over $4000.
We are extremely pleased to acknowledge these efforts to the total of $145,000
The Town of Oak Island made a donation of $1000. No other government entity supports us. Individual donors and organizations support us with over $12,000 and we make it stretch as far as we can. Because of this wonderful support, we have: 
Done over 30 educational programs, reaching over 3900 children and adults.
Documented avian migration patterns, identifying possible toxins and human impacts.
In 2015, we look forward to a 15% increase in patients, expenses and hopefully your contributions to cover them.


In Sept, we released 7 of 8 baby pelicans left as orphans on Okracoke by Hurricane Arthur. All were self sufficient fish catchers and flew beautifully. Since there was no migrating adult role model for them to follow, 5 were released at Murrells Inlet in South Carolina.
BUT...in the last few days, 5 inexperienced hatch year pelicans arrived at the shelter. These new juveniles all were tangled up in fishing line. Three of them had clearly migrated to our area from beaches further north. The next cycle will be pelicans who didn't migrate and developed frostbite!


These fascinating birds are often the indicators of environmental issues that potentially affect all of us. We provide medical care for all wild bird populations. But Black and Turkey vultures are often overlooked as sentinel species. Pictured here is "Uncle Fester", whose wing was injured - possibly by gunshot! If you would like to help us help him and other birds of prey, please click on the Paypal button above.


Meet Shadow, our newest resident teaching bird  She was hit by a vehicle last November and lost most of her sight. She's quite content to have people admire her while she demonstrates how owl eyes are so big they are unable to move them in their sockets. Owls do not have good peripheral vision. She's been added to our education permit along with Tim the pelican and Scarlet the red tailed hawk. Her first official program was a huge success at Wrightsville Beach Elementary School.where over 300 students were able to see an owl and a pelican up close.

Want to get involved in bird research?

Coastal Plain Conservation Group Tri-County Bird Count
Pender, New Hanover, Brunswick County, NC April 12
th 2014
Coastal Plain Conservation Group is organizing an exciting new community science project to study the habitats that migrating birds are using in the Tri-County area of Pender, New Hanover, and Brunswick County. This community science project is designed to engage local bird enthusiasts to provide valuable information about migratory bird use of rural and urban conservation areas. On April 12, 2014 community scientists will survey for birds at sites in Pender, New Hanover, and Brunswick County, recording bird species at each site. Participants will collect a list of species for each site visited, recording the greatest number of individuals for each species seen at each site. Greatest number is the most individuals of a species seen or heard at one time. The community scientist/team will then submit their data to CPCG or authorized recipient. Data sheets can be submitted electronically with our online submission form, emailed to a CPCG biologist, mailed to Coastal Plain Conservation Group, or dropped off at Wild Bird and Garden. Contact information may be found at