Caring or not caring is not the same as doing what's best for the
Earlier this Spring, we had a very young owl crash into one of our
windows and knock it self senseless. I heard the loud thunk on the
window and knew what it was and went out onto our deck in investigate.
Sure enough, a little owl was sitting upright on the deck, but barely
moving and all hunkered down like it was roosting. I came back
inside and watched it through the window, all the while considering my
What should I do? Bring it in and attempt to nurse it back to health?
Take it to an animal shelter? Just wait and see? I waited about 5
mins more and went back out on the deck. The owl had not moved, but
was still upright and could move it's head around. I went back inside
and began to search the internet for information on how to grab/handle a
bird without harming it. About 5 mins later, I went back out onto the
deck to check the bird. It looked up at me, immediately jumped up,
and flew away to a tree about 50 yards away, apparently no worse the
wear for its mishap. Whew!
Sometimes it's better to let nature take its course.
It's possible to care and feel compassion and still take a realistic
attitude toward the whole thing. Which is a better use of resources,
spending one's time and energy on a baby bird, or, say, volunteering at
a job retraining program for the underprivileged?
Obviously, there's not a single "right" answer to that question, but the
sad truth is that you can't fix everything, no matter how hard you try.
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
I used to work for the humane society and we often got wild birds
brought to us. The best thing is to put them back in the nest if you
can do it safely. Sometimes the parents kick out the weak birds if
there are too many in the nest, or that one happens to be weak. It's
It's a wivestale aboput touching them. You CAN touch them (gently of
Yea, keep cats away. Get your cats and neighbors to put cats in the
Birds eat worms, you can buy them at pet supply stores. (Meal worms).
Some birds will eat grains, and even small bits of grapes. It depends
on the type of bird. Again, the pet store should have cereals and
stuff for them as well as seed. This one is probably too young for
seed. And they need water too, place water in an eye dropper, hold it
against the tip of the beak and they should drink it. (dont get it in
their nostrils or you'll drown em). You need to feed about every 2
They also need to be kept warm, but not overheated. This can be
tricky. A small glass aquarium with a 25W bulb works, but if it's hot
outdoors, you may not need this. And you can overheat them too. I
recall we used to place a thermometer in the aquarium, but I can not
remember the temperature. It's many years since I did this.
Your best bet might be to call your local humane society and ask them
what to do. Be sure to know the type of bird if you can. A local
veterinarian will usually give some free advice over the phone too.
Good luck, it's not easy to care for them, but it can be done. I
think I'd first try to put them in the nest and remove cats from the
area. If it falls out again, then resort to the other methods. You
can even put a bedsheet across some blocks of wood and tack it. Works
like a trampoline and makes the landing softer.
On Sat, 22 May 2010 16:09:53 -0500, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
PBS is showing an hour on Nature about new-borns. It showed storks, I
think it was, who were killed by their mother when there wasn't enough
food. Although it looked like a harsher environment than most of the
Not all animals have their throat connected to their windpipe, is that
correct? So they can only breath through their nose and only eat
through their mouth.
Is it birds in general that imprint? I only remember hearing this
about ducks. And doesn't it have to be the first thing they see
after getting out of the egg? Wouldn't this chick have already seen
its mother, and imprinted on her?
When we found a baby bird, our vet told me to put some fish cat food in
a blender with a little water. Feed the soupy stuff to the bird with an
eye dropper. This was a tiny bird, just beginning to get feathers.
Didn't survive. Another time, we had two ducklings. Fed same stuff,
one survived, one didn't. The survivor was not accepted by other ducks
in large flock, and he thought my husband and I were his parents.
No, but it was pretty wierd :o) Raising a duck indoors is not something
I recommend. They poop every 4 minutes. Our schnauzer helped supervise
the duck...used to round it up if it began wandering. Took schnauzer to
be groomed one day and he came home with the usual bandanna around his
neck and went straight to his food bowl. Schnauzer standing in the
kitchen munching his dog chow and the duck started walking back and
forth under the dog's belly. Schnauzer still intent on dinner, duck
starts picking chow crumbs from the dog's whiskers. I was too
fascinated to stop the silly duck. After cleaning the dog's whiskers,
the duck apparently thought he had earned some dog chows, too, so he
grabbed one from the dog bowl. Wrong move...the dog barked him away and
I grabbed the duck because the dog chow was halfway down his skinny neck
(like the birds in Bugs Bunny cartoons)...just squeezed his neck to push
the chow back up and out.
As soon as we got the pair of ducks, we put a mirror in their box so
they would know they were ducks but that didn't work...the surviving
duck followed my husband and I like he was trained to do so :o) When it
came time he was almost ready to fly, we took him down to the lake where
there were large flocks. Turned him loose, but as soon as he approached
any of the groups of ducks, they took off for the water and he ran back
to us. Tried that a few times, with same result. When last seen, he
was put in his box for the night in the back yard...he either flew away
or became a cat snack. Probably the latter, but no signs of his demise
The schnauzer had killed a house mouse when he was only 6 mos old, but
never threatened other animals. Kids brought a baby bunny into the
house one evening...three kids and a dog in the bedroom, door closed.
When it was too quiet for too long...couple of hours?...I went to
investigate. They were all playing with the rabbit.
It was pretty funny to watch him with a tiny baby garter snake. He
would crouch down and approach and the goofy garter snake coiled up like
a cobra ready to strike. Dog barked like mad and backed away. That
went on for several minutes until the dog lost interest and the snake
We have raised a bunch of baby Muscovy ducks that were orphaned for one
reason or another... 29 all told, over the last four years.
The most at one time was this past 12 months, one group of 6, another of 16
that were a month younger. Once they were big enough to go outside they
did, returning to a walled garden at night where they slept on a lanai. Can
you imagine the quantity of poop that 22 ducks can expel overnight??? I had
to buy a pressure washer.
All our ducks eventually left for an area across the lake I call "Ducktown".
The females are good fliers at about 3 months, most left by the time they
were 4 months old though one stayed more than a year. The males are a bit
slower at flying, generally leave between 7 and 11 months. One stayed
almost 3 years (he was in love with my wife but hated the dog). Several
come back from time to time; at the moment, 3 from last summer do, sometimes
bringing other wild ducks with them.
Ducks are neat critters.
They are shit machines :o) Some waterfronts are overpopulated because
people feed them year around....same with geese and gulls. They become
pests. When we fish from our dock, there may not be a bird in sight
when we go out...get the hook baited and in the water and great blue
heron and egrets show up. They are real beggars and wait around for
free meals. Gulls are nasty ... they can divebomb and grab a cookie
from a toddler's hand without touching the hand. Had a gull swoop down
and steal the hot dog out of the bun I was holding one day at the beach.
They don't call them "laughing gulls" for nothing :o)
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