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'It Just Doesn't Happen Very Often': Exotic Bird Washes Up On Orange County Beach

HUNTINGTON BEACH (CBSLA) — A tropical bird, most commonly seen in Mexico and South America, washed up on an Orange County beach last week before being attacked by a dog.

A blue-footed booby (Sula nebouxii) is seen in Isabela island in the Galapagos Archipelago in the Pacific Ocean 1000 km off the coast of Ecuador, on February 22, 2019. (Photo by Rodrigo BUENDIA / AFP) (Photo credit should read RODRIGO BUENDIA/AFP via Getty Images)

The exotic bird, a blue-footed booby, was taken to the Wetlands and Wildlife Care Center where he is being treated for his injuries.

"When they actually beach themselves, there's usually something wrong," Lisa Peronne, with the Wetlands and Wildlife Care Center, said. "We don't know why he beached himself, but shortly afterwards he did get attacked by a dog, and that's how he came to be with us."

The bird is eating fish again, a good sign, and his blood work came back normal. The blue-footed booby tends to stay farther south in the warm waters off the coasts of Mexico and South America.

"My assumption was maybe that we had a warm-water current where he followed that up, and that's how he ended up this far north," Peronne said. "It has been known to happen, it just doesn't happen very often, so when it does, we all get really excited to see one up close in person."

The bird gets its name because of the bright blue color of its feel, though wildlife experts say a blue-footed booby in distress might not display the stunning color — which is the case with this bird.

The blue-footed booby will spend Christmas and New Year's at the wildlife hospital before being released back out at sea.

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