Wednesday, July 29, 2009

So there's this squirrel that walks into a bar.........

Things are hopping around here. The last 2 squirrel orphans are about a week until they are released. I haven't decided where to release these 2 but they will be released together.
The Peregrine is also doing very well. He is going into the vet's office in Payson next Tuesday. We will get some x-rays and then we'll know more about the severity of his injury. I hope there is nothing broken as he is an adult and more than likely has a mate waiting for him somewhere nearby.
Tomorrow (Thursday), Connie and I will be driving to Richfield to meet up with one of Best Friends volunteers. They will be taking possession of the Prairie falcon that was seized from a falconer here in Price. The bird will be hanging out there, growing in new feathers to replace the old broken ones on her right wing. When they are finished growing in, then she will be checked for her ability to kill successfully and then released there, in southern Utah.
My facility is smaller than Best Friends but we see pretty much the same number of patients in rehab each year, so since the Prairie falcon doesn't need anything medically, just time, they have more space to allow that to happen. We have a good working relationship and help each other out whenever possible. Their head rehabilitator (my equivalent) is Carmen Smith. What a sharp gal! When Utah changed their protocol for those wanting to be rehabilitators and not just a sub-permittee any longer, I was the first one to take the test (and pass) and Carmen was the second. That's how we became acquainted and I thank Suzanne McMullin for that!

We released the ring-neck dove we had in rehab this week. Something, I think a cat, had got ahold of the poor thing and it was in terrible shape; missing a lot of important flight feathers and puncture wounds and tears. With some antibiotics and time, she's now out flying around, being a dove!

We're still working on the transfers for our bald eagle Shu to New York and the 2 American robins to Florida. I hate this part of rehab! Paperwork, yuk!

We also got in a little mystery bird, that has now been identified as a Willow flycatcher. What a sweet little thing. It was found, orphaned, in the desert on an ATV trail. The people that found him/her are from St George, Utah, but know me from a few years back when they brought me a hummingbird. Lucky for this little bird that they were the ones that found her and contacted me and where able to get the bird out of there right away. I've included a picture of her compared to a quarter to give you an idea of her size. That's full grown! She shouldn't be with us for long. I just need to introduce her to bugs any day now.
All of the eagles are doing great, eating us out of house and home. We had a local man donate some game meat to us the other day. It's not a lot, but it will sure help out and we can space out the quail feedings a little bit for a week or so until that meat is gone. The quail are $25 per bag of 10, without shipping and we go through 1 1/2 bags a day. Eagles are big birds and they eat a LOT of meat! That's why we're constantly looking for donations. We're not sitting around eating bon-bon's that we buy with the donations- we're buying food necessary for our patients and medicines that they require to heal. No one GIVES this stuff to us, unfortunately, but we have to buy it and the same goes for everything we use and need to do this job.
Well, I think that covers all of the patients that are currently with us.
I'll get pictures tomorrow of the transfer and include them in the next post.

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Feathered brothers and sisters, you came to us broken and as you bled…….we saw you desperate, dehydrated, desiccated, diseased, distressed, emaciated, famished, frayed, frightened, helpless, hungry, ragged, ravenous, shaken, shocked, shot, sickly, stressed, stunned, tattered, thirsty, traumatized, torn, weary and wounded. Defiantly, you stood us off with your last breath as we tried to tend to you. We saw you come in as cute, naked, fuzzy, cuddly youth, as mischievous, defiant adolescents, as fierce, regal rulers of the sky and as cunning, maimed elders whose time on earth was almost done. You endeared yourselves to us, bit us, charmed us, footed us, delighted us, hissed at us, talked to us, mantled at us, and graced us with your presence.

Some of you mended and were able to go on your way, never looking back. Some of you were injured in ways that prevented you from going, so you stayed with us to teach us…….And we came to love you. Others were too far gone, and you went home - where you fly free from pain with the Great One. All of you have touched us, and we are changed because of you.

used with permission by Arlene Powers