Tuesday, April 20, 2010

It's been a busy few weeks..............

Hello everyone.

Although our patient load isn't bad at all, there has been a lot of traveling to our vet's office, which is 75 miles one-way, with those patients. Horizon finally was able to get her pins removed from her right wing. She's now in the large flight cage. Her eye, however, is looking very bad. We take her to Salt Lake tomorrow to the eye specialist. I'm pretty sure she will be eventually, if not now, completely blind in that one eye and may possibly lose the whole eye, either from surgery or due to the injury sustained by the semi.

I'll keep everyone posted as we learn more. I've included new pictures of her today, both wing and eye. The wing looks rough, but that's because of the large device that had been in her bone, holding it together while it mended.

Once the feathers grow back in, which they are starting to do as visible in the photo, you won't even know that she had once had that device there at all.

We also got in a young pigeon that needed just a little help before he could be sent on his way, back to his flock's area. We hand fed him for a couple of days and he was ready to eat on his own by then. He was found on the ground being attacked by a Raven. Now, I love Ravens, but they are naughty birds! That's part of the reason I love them. The pigeon also had a hole on his side where the skin was ripped open by the Ravens' beak. With that healed and him eating on his own, we let him go, I'm sure a bit more wiser about Ravens.

The new eagle that I mentioned in the last post, turned out to be a female. I've included photo's of her out in the eagle flight and of her release. Her rehabilitation time was minimal since she had no broken bones. We were concerned about her continued droop in one wing and took her back up to the vet's office to have her x-rayed again, just to make sure. It was determined that there was some soft tissue damage there and that is what caused the wing to droop, but her flight was perfect! So when all tests were completed and antibiotics were as well, we took her to the Dog Valley area near highway 10 and I-70 here in Utah and released her. She was an adult, so I hope she went immediately and found her mate. The gentleman releasing her is Gary Denhalter. His daughter Tonia keeps us alert to wildlife problems in the area she works driving a semi-tractor trailer. We value her help tremendously.

We're trying to get Ivie, our other golden eagle back up here from Kanab. She's been hanging out in Best Friends eagle flight for observation. Unfortunately, she is not behaving as she should, flight wise. So our last option, is to have a falconer who specializes in eagles to fly her, creance, to be exact. This was we should be able to determine if the slight turn-out on her wing is going to ground her permanatly or not. We obviously hope for the latter. We are just waiting for him to drive down from Idaho to do this. What a nice guy!

And last, we picked up a second year male Sharp-shinned hawk. He came in from Moab, Utah. Officer T.J.Robertson met me in Green River, Utah with him. He has significant trauma to one side of his body. Not sure of the source. Usually these guys get in trouble hitting windows in houses where birdfeeders are nearby. When the little birds are getting chased, sometimes they head to the windows since it looks like a passage way into the house and they think they can get away through them. Once they realise that they can't, most of them turn, very fast, and with a hawk in pursuit that's keeping their eye on the bird, sometimes they end up hitting the window. This can leave them unconscience and vulnerable to other predators or even dead, breaking their necks or other trauma. He has a dislocation in his right wing at the elbow. Time will tell if he can be returned back into the wild. These guys DO NOT make good educational bird candidates. They are just too high strung.

Well, I think that covers it all for now. It's been beautiful weather here, other than a bit windy. Pollen here is having a hay-day, no pun intended. I think I'll buy some stock in Claritin!


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