23 December 2013

Fox Sparrow Released in Sunny Brae

December 10, a resident of the Sunny Brae neighborhood of Arcata brought to our clinic a Fox Sparrow who'd struck a window on her house. Imagine the shock of hitting an invisible wall while flying. 

Nothing in the evolution of songbirds has prepared them for this recent development. Window strikes are often fatal. Head trauma and permanently debilitating fractures are common. Sometimes, however a bird might suffer no injury at all and a quiet safe palce to recover for 30 minutes to an hour is all that is needed before s/he is able to fly off again. For this little sparrow, though, it was neither fatal or minor. A broken clavicle (analogous to our collarbone) rendered her or him unable to fly. Fortunately the bird was rescued before anything worse happened (such as an outdoor kitty!).

You can help protect songbirds from these collisions in a number of ways. Decals, objects suspended in front of the glass, anything that draws attention the fact that there is no safe passage. Both strongly reflected sunlight and apparent clear sailing right through a structure can deceive a quickly moivng bird. Multiple startegies may be necessary. (more info)

After 12 days with her/his wing immobilized (periodically checking to make sure all was proceeding nicely) the Fox Sparrow's clavicle had healed. Bird bones heal much faster than mammals! After a couple of days in our Songbird Aviary, so that we could evaluate the sparrow's flight, all was well and the bird was ready for release. We took the lucky bird back to the neighborhood where s/he was found.

As soon as the box was opened the sparrow darted to the nearest blackberry bramble and back to the life s/he'd known before it was interrupted by the invisible wall of glass.

If you find an injured wild animal, please call our hotline 707-822-8839. After hours? Simply follow the directions on our message and we'll get back to you first thing in the morning. Thank you for your love of wildlife. And remember, your support makes our work possible. 

(photos: Laura Corsiglia)

21 December 2013

Cooper's Hawk Released

Cooper's Hawk brought into Humboldt Wildlife Care Center on the Winter Solstice after being hit by a car on US 101 along Humboldt Bay. She was a lucky bird! Only stunned by the impact, after a night of captivity her wits were regained and she was flying as strongly as ever. No injuries were present and she was quickly returned to the area where she'd been found. In excllent condtion this bird is a very capable hunter. Let's hope she raises some young to be just like her next Spring! Check out the video taken by BAX/HWCC volunteer Cheryl Henke

04 December 2013

Cackling Goose released!

This Cackling Goose, found emaciated and near death on Trinidad State Beach, was brought into care at Bird Ally X/ Humboldt Wildlife Care Center. After 3 weeks of clover, cracked corn and a quiet place to recover s/he was released 12/4/13 into a large group of wintering geese nearby.

Aleutian Cackling Geese winter all along the west coast of North America, often flying directly from their breeding grounds in the Aleutian Islands, across the North Pacific Ocean nonstop, arriving here in very thin condition. If anything goes wrong, a bird may lack the resources to recover on his or her own. At times like these, the lucky birds are rescued. Emaciation is life threatening, but it does have a well known treatment - fluids, warmth and an appropriate diet.

If you find an injured wild animal, contact your nearest permitted wildlife rehabilitator. Thank you for your support and for your love for wildlife. www.birdallyx.net (video Kim Coleman/Bird Ally X)

25 November 2013

An Introduction to Aquatic Bird Rehabilitation, Revised 2nd Edition Released

An Introduction to Aquatic Bird Rehabilitation sold out its first run. We're happy to announce our 2nd, revised edition is now available. What's new? Number one is the addition of Marie Travers as an author! As a co-director of Bird Ally X, Ms. Travers was an important contributor to the 1st edition. With recent shiftings and re-configurings we are happily able to credit her invaluable work.

Other changes include an updated fish slurry recipe, as well as updated resources. (If you have the 1st edition and would like access to these updates, let us know. We'll send you a pdf file.)

The book is still $38 and still available right here. Written by wildlife rehabilitators for wildlife rehabilitators this book can get you through the very basics of treating these beautiful and demanding birds. Order yours today!

12 September 2013

coyote's tail swishing madly away

you can use this machine
for what it's worth -
its a trek uphill and
the road is lined with this or that thing.

these aren't the first stars i've seen -
but still they are.
still the sky is this sky
and not another.

thumbnail moon and
venus above the
live blue sea

blackberry stitches the old stumps
together -
straddling the ridge
between this and that stream.
young doug fir here
and there - even as
blows rain.

open toward the blaze of reality,
a coyote's tail swishing madly

the rustle of leaves

this warm September dusk on the
western edge of what happened.