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Chevron Pipe Line Co. on Friday donated $10,000 to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Northern Utah for its care of beavers rescued from the site of a diesel fuel leak at Willard Bay State Park.
Chevron spokesman Gareth Johnstone described the money as an "advance," adding that the company "has formally offered to cover all costs associated with nursing the beavers back to full health."
The nonprofit center in Ogden has been caring for six beavers rescued from the site of the March 18 spill. Officials estimate more than 27,000 gallons leaked from a split in a Chevron pipeline that carries diesel from Salt Lake City to points in Idaho and Washington state.
Johnstone said a Chevron representative has visited the center to offer assistance and thank workers. "We are committed to assisting the beavers back to health and returning them to their natural habitat," he said.
Center Executive Director DaLyn Erickson said Friday that Chevron promised the $10,000 several days ago, "but they came through with the check today and reiterated they would be helping with the expense of the beavers."
She said the three beavers rescued within a few days of the spill are doing well. "We're feeling fairly confident they're going to make a full recovery."
Three other beavers rescued eight days after the spill two juveniles and a female adult believed to be their mother are still in critical condition, she said.
"They've got severe burns to their body, around their eyes, in their mouths. ... They're pretty critical right now but making progress," Erickson said.
She said worries that a father beaver might still need to be rescued were alleviated after an ultrasound showed the mother is not pregnant.
The community's response to requests for help has been "incredible," Erickson said, with people bringing in willow and cottonwood cuttings for beaver food and making cash donations. Donations can be made online at wrcnu.org.
Because the center's workers have been so busy with beaver care, it had to cancel a fundraiser that was expected to raise $30,000 for the facility. "Losing that," Erickson said, "it's going to put a pinch on us."
How to help
The nonprofit Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Northern Utah is asking the public to make donations online at wrcnu.org and to deliver willow and cottonwood cuttings to 1490 Park Blvd. in Ogden.