03/23/2016 17:29 EDT | Updated 03/24/2017 01:12 EDT

'Soy' gulls found in tofu vat are back to seagulls after cleaning and release

VANCOUVER — Dozens of seagulls rescued from a vat of soybean waste in a Vancouver alley almost two weeks ago have been released back to the wild after a thorough cleaning.

Sixty two birds were found March 11 trapped in the vat behind a tofu procession plant that had a metal screen on top allowing the birds to get in, but preventing them from getting out.

The group Wildlife Rescue stepped in for the largest single rescue and rehabilitation job in its history.

Wildlife Rescue says in a news release that its workers spent three days cleaning away the tofu residue sticking to the bird's feathers.

Birds need waterproof feathers and without that barrier they could easily get hypothermia if released back to the wild.

All the birds survived the cleaning, and after spending several days preening their feathers in a warm location, they were released Wednesday at Vancouver's New Brighton Park.

The Canadian Press