Monday, December 24, 2012

Ho Ho Ho and the snow keeps falling and the wind keeps blowing

It's rehabbings slow season, but that doesn't mean we aren't getting in patients in need.  These are two of our newest, a Great Horned owl that was hit by a vehicle in Salt Lake county and cannot see due to the trauma.  We hope that she will regain some sight, but at this point, it's obvious that she will be non-releasable.  Such a sad way for her way of life to end for her.  If some vision returns, we hope to put her into an educational program.  Only time will tell.
Another little angel is our new young pigeon.  She was found and brought to us by animal control.  She has been burned on the top of her head.  It looks like an electrocution, but there is no exit wound, so we are not sure how this came to be.  She is doing quite well and is eating on her own and new feathers have started to grow in.  No broken bones, just this injury.  Odd......

The patients come year round and we work year round, 7 days a week.  If you appreciate the work we do and understand that only wildlife rehabilitators work with injured or orphaned wildlife, then please support our work as it is all accomplished through donations from people like you.  All state and federal wildlife agencies bring us our patients, along with other agencies and the public as well.  This is where the connection ends.  These animals are brought to us because 'they need something'.  All medical care is provided by us, the wildlife rehabilitators and if necessary, surgery is performed by the veterinarians we work with.  There is great expense involved. 
Thank you for your continued support for the wildlife................

Merry Christmas,

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A cold December post...........

We have now sold out of our calendars.  Thank you everyone who purchased one.  Our needs are year round.  We don't get patients just this time of year.....this is just like an emergency room, patients coming and going all year long, all needing something, that's why they are here.

We must keep our facility stocked with everything we need for those encounters.  We cannot survive with donations from those that bring us patients, that won't keep the doors open.  It's an ongoing effort, so please consider ongoing support for our wildlife. 

Our female Red-Tail hawk is doing well.  We will soon be moving her into our flight to get into condition for her release.  Right now, we have our Crow (a gunshot victim) and California Gull hanging out together in the large flight.  I need to see what each of them can do and since they are not a threat to each other and have a large area, they can hang out there and they seem to be enjoying each others company.  I have remote cameras hooked up in the flight and am able to watch what's going on throughout the day.  It's been quite entertaining. 

Cisco on transfer day
Cisco, our non-releasable Golden eagle was finally transferred to the Iowa Tribe in Oklahoma.  He's a sweet boy and we will miss him.  Right now, we have one eagle here and other eagle in southern Utah using a 100 foot flight belonging to Best Friends/Wild Friends department.  We are trying to determine if that eagle, Sia, can be released. 

Danny, our Great Horned owl that is also non-releasable due to his injuries, will be headed to Kansas, hopefully this week.  The paperwork was finally finished and he had his health exam today for his permit to cross state lines.  We are so happy for him.  We are still waiting on the paperwork to be finalized for our one-eyed Swainsons hawk.  He will be going to a facility in New York as an educational bird.  Hopefully, we can get the paperwork finalized before Christmas. 

We also have a Northern Flicker, a member of the woodpecker family, admitted as a patient.  He came in after hitting his head on something and had a concussion.  He also may have had a cat messing with him once on the ground.  We treated him as though that happened since if it had and we hadn't treated him, we would have lost him.  You only get one shot when that happens so better safe than sorry!  Well that's it for now.

Stay warm and don't forget about the importance of water for all wildlife/birds this time of year.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Our 2013 Calendars are now available!

We have 2013 Calendars for sale to benefit all of our patients.  This calendar is roughly 11x9 inches and spiral bound.  Every month has a different wildlife patient we have had in our care.  We are selling them for $18.00.  To mail a calendar, add $2.00 anywhere in the U.S.  You can use our Pay Pal account, just add the comment 'calendar' and include your mailing address so we can get this out to you.  We have a limited number only.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

A new way to help wildlife in our care.......

We now have a 'shop' at CafePress where you can purchase merchandise with images of some of our past patients.  This 'shop' will continue to grow, adding more merchandise with many more images.  Purchases will benefit our wildlife and you can educate your friends and family about wildlife rehabilitation while wearing some beatiful apparel.  Please share this site and visit it frequently.
Thank you,
  Second Chance Wildlife Rehabilitation


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Help Us Continue Our Work

We need to raise $2000 quickly to purchase a good used van that has become available.   This transportation is critical to the work we do.  Without reliable transportation we will be unable to respond to pick up wildlife out of our immediate area.  This is urgent.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Just a quick update on a few things going on.

So, we are still working on a few transfers of non-releasable birds that we feel would make good educational ambassadors.  One of those, is Danny, a Great Horned owl that came in to us, already missing a portion of one of his wings.  This poor guy had been living by scavenging things off of the ground.  His talons were dull showing he had been on the ground for some time.  He was thin and dehydrated.  We couldn't do anything about the wing as it had happened some time before him being discovered.  We did make sure infection would not take hold and provided him with food and other nutritional support.  He will be going to Missouri and a group that provides educational programs to the public.  Danny has the perfect temperament for this.  The paperwork is in the works.

We also have a new Red-Tail hawk that came in after being found in a field in Emery county.  She is a first year bird, with a swollen left foot and an abrasion higher up on her leg.  She also has a fracture in the wrist of her left wing.  At this point she appears non-releasable.  She most definitely needs an x-ray to determine this.

Little Mojo had her x-rays and her injuries
are not healed.  In fact, she has a fracture in the 'hand' portion of her left wing and her left humerus. 
She needs more healing time.  The fracture in her humerus is midline, which is good if you have to have a fracture, but more time is needed.  She's not happy.  Poor little girl is surely missing her mate. 
We have several groups interested in our Ferruginous hawk for their educational programs.  Right now we are getting paperwork around to those expressing serious interest in Layla.  She is doing so well right now and we couldn't be happier for her.
Thanks for following our work.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Can you help?

Wow.  We are still plugging along.  Most of our patients are either non-releasable and we are working on placement for them, or we are determining if they can/should be released.  This time of year is always this way.  Enough time has passed that patients that came in earlier in the year with severe problems are finally being evaluated or have been.
Our eagle from the last post, Mesa, was released at Hogans Pass in central Utah.  We have released eagles at this area before.  It's a beautiful place, with high alpine mountains, over 9,000 feet at the summit and contrasting red-rock deserts.  The beauty of Utah.  I hope Mesa will thrive there and in the next couple of years, find a mate.

Our one-eyed Swainsons hawk, a first year male, will be going into an education  program in New York.  The paperwork is in the process, so he will become an educational embassador for his species.  We really struggled with this decision as he is an amazing killer of prey, but his inability to land on his perches perfectly, every time, made our decision.  This would not be acceptable in the wild and would put him in extreme danger, drawing the attention of other predators.

We took in another little Screech owl, this one from the Salt Lake County area of Utah.  Talk about a messed up wing.  Now that some of the swelling and bruising is gone, it's apparent that there are no broken bones in those areas.  We still have one area of concern so it's guarded optimism at this point.  Once the swelling goes down there, I will get her an x-ray to confirm things are good or not.  She's such a cutie.  She was named Mojo by the finders.  We hope to return her to that area should things work out for her.

Our Ferruginous hawk, Layla, is doing very well.  I put her into our large flight cage today, mainly to see what she can and can't do.  I'm positive she will be non-releasable at this point, but now that she is self feeding,  we can work on finding her that perfect place to live out her days.

 If she had continued not eating and we had to force her twice daily, that is not an option for an educational bird.  They have to be self feeding.  It's about quality of life.  She has gone from not expected to last the night, to a thriving, fiesty girl.  She showed all of us!  The mass she had develop as a result of the trauma that brought her in to us is still there, but not growing any longer and is not causing her respiratory distress, as it was starting to.  We are so happy for her.

We are releasing Honey, the Great Horned owl, this weekend near Genola, Utah.  Remember her?  The owl that was caught in a barbed wire fence near the Colorado border and the finder 'cut' her off the fence instead of cutting the fence?  She went through several cold-laser therapy treatments here in Price and had only natural honey used on her wound.

 She healed very well with absolutely no indication of her prior injury.  She's been hanging out, regrowing her feathers in that area and then, exercising her wings in the flight.  Today, Connie drove her back to Utah county to my other volunteer Jim, and he will release her in the next few days.

Enjoy the pictures.  If anyone knows of someone in a position that can help us with a van, whether it be a donated van or someone that works at a dealership that can possibly get a used van donated, we are desperate.  And considering we are picking up most of our patients and they come from extremely rural areas, we need one that won't leave us stranded in the middle of nowhere with a patient in trouble.  We can provide a tax number for this donation.  Without a good van, we can only rely on DWR (our states wildlife agency) to get our patients to us and believe me, that won't work.  Our people are covering huge areas of the state and frequently need me to intervene as they cannot.  So you see our dilemma.  It's a great cause.

Thanks everyone,

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

I sure love this time of year..........

Don't you just love Fall?  The colors are spectacular, animals are on the move and preparing for winter.  The coolness in the air feels wonderful.  It's my favorite time of year.  There is also a sense of urgency in the air with all the changes happening.  So too, our animals in rehab feel that as well.  It's difficult to watch those that cannot go with their urges, natures call to move.  We move those that we can, but some, will have to spend the winter with us.  This is the way it is for all rehabbers working with migratory species.  We do what's right for the patient, regardless.  At least that's what a good rehabber does.

We have been able to release a few of our patients;  a Swainsons hawk  that became orphaned after a wildfire.  She hung out here, with other Swainsons' hawks until she was ready and proved to be a proficient killer.  We also released an American Kestrel that had a head injury and trauma to a wing.  We took him back to Moab, Utah and let him go. 
Male American Kestrel from Moab, Utah
Our Short-eared owl and Saw-whet owl were also successfully released. 

Saw-Whet owl release at Jeremy Ranch, Utah

We have a Swainsons hawk that had a broken leg and his cast has now been removed and he is doing quite well.  I have a volunteer checking a spot that is a staging area for other Swainson hawks to see if another group has come through and is resting there for a few days.  If so, I may drive him down there so he can migrate with the group.
Male Swainsons hawk with only one eye.

 I've determined our Swainsons hawk that came in missing an eye, cannot go back to the wild as he occassionally misses his perches.  This wouldn't be good for survival out there.  It's hard enough and when you've got a problem like that, well, it just isn't good.

We are anticipating release of one of our Golden eagles,
 Mesa.  He has now been banded with a Federal band and is currently kill-testing.  So far, so good.  He's very strong and tenacious.  Just what I like to see in an eagle.  We are still working on a transfer for Cisco, another of our Golden eagles that surgery couldn't help.  The surgery was done, but calcification around the injury prevents the elbow joint from moving properly, now grounding him.  He will be going to live in Oklahoma with the Iowa Nation.  Check out their wonderful website.

They have several of our non-releasable eagles, both Goldens and Balds. 

We had another little Saw-whet owl come in, but that little angel did not survive.  He had a traumatic brain injury and died as a result.  These little angels are so delicate, yet hardy at the same time.  There is hardly anything to them, weighing less than 100 grams.  Our little male weighed just 60 grams, females weighing more of course.

We also had another Ferruginous hawk come in from the same area our other Ferruginous came from, around the Four-corners area of Utah.  The second one had secondary lead poisoning.  My God, why can't people get with the program.  These deaths are totally preventable.  These hayseeds around here continue to use lead based ammunition.  They go out shooting animals, just to kill something and then, they leave their poor bodies, now filled with lead, just laying there, not attempting to bury them at all, so any predator that comes by, now has an easy meal, that will most certainly kill them.  It takes anywhere from a couple of days to a few days, depending on the species eating the remains and how much they have eaten.  It's one of the most horrific deaths you can imaging.  There are many different types of ammunition that they could use that won't cause this, since they feel they MUST kill things, but they don't buy this alternative since it's a few pennies more.  It's disgusting. It doesn't matter the repercussions, because for these idiots, there are none.  We rehabilitators are the ones who deal with the aftermath and see the pain and suffering and death.  This Ferruginous did not survive.  We started the treatment immediately, even before blood was pulled to run a lead level, but it was not enough to save him.  The damage was too extensive.  He fought a good fight but in the end, the lead won.  This species is listed as a species of concern in Utah, so you would think  our wildlife agency would have an interest in these cases, but, not really.  It's not something you can hunt in Utah and therefore, not sell a permit for killing it, so it's not really a concern.  Sad, but true.


Thursday, September 27, 2012

Busy Time of Year and the weather is pushing us along

Fall is certainly upon us.  It's early, like everything this year.  Rehab has been very effected by this from double and triple clutches of birds and strange storms and many, many fires this year.  Utah already has had it's first snow of the year and the winds are giving us grief.  The pics below are of a release of two American Kestrels and two Barn owls.  My grandson Joshua was finally able to release his first 'big' bird.

We have been able to release a few of our patients with a particular focus

on getting out one of our Swainsons' hawks in time for their migration.

  Thankfully, one of my volunteers found a staging area and she was welcomed into the group.  We still have two more Swainsons, but I don't know if/when they will be released.  One has a missing eye, well, there is something there, but he is non-visual and the other came in with a broken right leg.   The pic says RTHA, but he is a Swainsons.   He will get his cast off in about a week or so.  Those two may be wintering over with us.

We are trying to get our Saw-Whet owl in the mood to kill, but for now, she's content with 'Club Debbie' and the in-room-services we provide.

We have a Golden Eagle, Mesa, that is ready to kill-test and hopefully will soon be ready to be released.

We also released a Sharp-Shinned hawk that came in injured and emaciated.  Once the fracture healed, we determined that this bird could fly well enough to be set-free, so we taught her that mice are also a good food source and she learned that well and quickly.  Sharpies generally are bird eaters, so the added food source and ability to kill it will most certainly increase her chances in the wild.  We hope she does well.

We are kill-testing our Short-eared owl as well.  Apparently she is not as thrilled at this prospect as our little Sharpie was.  Oh well, time will tell. 

We took in another Kestrel, this one from Moab, Utah after being struck by a man riding a dirt bike there.  He's doing well and should be released soon.  He came in with a concussion and a slight wing droop in his left wing, although I can't find a fracture anywhere in that wing.  Hoping it may be a tissue injury.

Enjoy the pic's.  Remember everyone that every donation made up until the 1st of  November will be doubled when going to our veterinarian in Utah county, Dr. Jay Ipsen.  Donations during this time will be particularly beneficial since they will be doubled and the bill we still have for the year 2011 is quite large and will be applied to it.  Thank God he's a patient man.  I can't imagine not being able to provide the necessary medical care that Dr. Ipsen provides, such as complex surgeries and x-rays for our patients.  These things take money and while we rehabilitators work for free, taking no money at all, our vets are providing these services and a great deal is donated, but not all so these bills pile up without donations to cover them.  Please go to our PayPal button and help the wildlife if you can.


Monday, September 10, 2012

Very busy for this time of year....................

This post is going to be about our little Night Hawk.  We get several of these little guys in each year, most are hit by vehicles at dusk and night while they are chasing insects that are attracted to the headlights from our cars.  These little predators are amazing creatures.  They nest on the ground, so they have what is referred to as 'cryptic plumage'.  They blend very well.  They hunt in groups of other Night Hawks and bats as they are after the same food source.  If you have ever gone to a business at night that has a large parking lot with those hideously bright lights, no doubt you've seen these guys and their cousins hunting.  You may have thought they were bats, but these are larger than are most common bats and the wings are totally different.  The Night Hawks, members of the Night Jar family which includes Poor Will's and Whippoorwill's, have a white band on each wing that can be seen in flight.  They are very fast and agile, so when they get injured, it's usually not a good outcome as their little bones are too small for most surgical attempts and they would never withstand being anesthetized and would die in the process, so it's rare to have a good outcome with these angels.
We currently have one here in our care, that we are hoping will be released.  I'm including a video during a feeding to show you their amazing mouths.  These little ones hunt by opening their huge mouths and flying through a group of insects and then just swallowing what they caught.  Similar to baline whales and how they hunt.  So a bit of education and a video.  Learn more about Night Jar's and how they live.  You are sure to be surprised!
                                                       Enjoy!  Debbie

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Lot's of pic's in this post.............

Finally have a moment to update a few things................ Our last two Kestrels are now together in a small flight.  I'm having trouble finding smaller mice to kill test them, but it will happen here soon. 
Fall migration has already started, so our Swainsons hawk needs to get kill tested quickly since she will need to leave the area and head to Argentina, where Swainsons hawks head for the winter.
She came in from an area in Utah where wildfires were burning and most likely had been separated from her parents during this critical time.  She is strong and well-fleshed at this point, so it's time for 'mouse school'.

This has been a very busy year. 

A lot of complex cases.  It's been hot and everything is running about 6 weeks early all around the country as far as weather and wild animals natural behavior.  Courtships and nesting and so on.  That makes for several clutches for many species of birds and mammals, (litters).  It looks like our area is also going to be in line for a wetter than average winter......

All of our Great Horned owls are out in our flight, strengthening their flight muscles and building endurance.  They have also been learning to kill.  There are 6 owls that will be leaving us soon.   I've included pic's of them in the flight.

                                                                                             Cuties, aren't they?                                                           

 We had 3 Barn owl orphans this year and they have already been released.  We took them to an area in Carbon county called Hiawatha and released them there.

Goodbye my angels...............................

We still have one other Barn owl that came in from Salt Lake County after being caught up in fishing line and stuck upside down in a tree.  There is damage from that injury but we were able to restore blood supply to that area with cold laser therapy.  She had treatments every other day for 2 weeks. Then, she started chewing on the area.......frustrating.  So we have circulation in that area, but now we are having to wrap that area so she will leave it alone while healing from the chewing.  Two steps forward and one step back!

We were lucky to have a local chiropractic office donate their time and services to this Barn owl and a Great Horned owl that came in after getting caught on a barbed wire fence near the Colorado/Utah border. 
Instead of cutting the barbed wire to get the owl off, the land owner cut the owl off the fence instead.  Initially, we were concerned over how much tissue was missing.  It was pretty nasty, but no vital tendons or muscles were involved.  The outer skin and feathers were gone however.  We used the cold laser therapy with this owl as well to help the tissue heal.

Amazingly, with continuous bandage changes and natural treatments, they wing has healed!  We are hoping that the vital feathers that were affected by the continues bandage wrappings will grow out unaffected.  Time will only tell.  We are calling that Great Horned owl, Honey and she is also a first year bird. I'm including a series of pic's of Honeys wing during her treatments. 

There is, of course, more, but it will take time loading all the pic's I'd like to include, so that's all I'm going to post for now.  Thanks for checking in with us.  Remember, we also have a Facebook page that I update frequently.  Just go to Second Chance Wildlife Rehabilitation and it will come up.


Saturday, August 4, 2012

Eagle release tomorrow

We are going to be releasing a Golden eagle tomorrow in Emery county.  This female came to us from the Monticello area.  That area is a haven for eagles; flat, windy and many prairie dogs.  There are large Cottonwood trees, a favorite of eagles, all around for resting.  This gal was on the ground with a full crop, but she was weak as well.  Her crop wasn't emptying out properly and the food in it was rotting.  This can be life threatening.  During this time it was very hot in the Monticello area and this can cause problems for animals of all kinds. 
For educational purposes, the crop is an area just past the mouth and throat where food can be held until a later time.  Not all birds have crops but eagles do.  When they want to move the food out of their crop and down into their 'stomach', they make a series of movements with their neck, moving the food down and down.  When this is done, they can fill the crop up again if they chose to.  Sometimes, the crop will not empty, thus causing problems.  There a several reasons this may happen.  Dehydration, food that is unusually large in size and stuck in the crop and lead poisoning are just a few reasons this happens.  Our job is to determine, which one or ones may be causing the problem and go from there.  One may see a huge crop on a downed bird and think they are just fine and too heavy to get off of the ground, but assuming that may seal a birds fate.  I have seen many birds with enormous crops that are starving to death.

We hydrated her and emptied out her crop and got things working properly again after a few days.  Since then, she has just been hanging out and we have been observing her, making sure her crop is moving normally. 
We had her banded with a federal USFW band and now she is ready to go.  Since she is younger, I will not be taking her back to the Monticello area, but instead, taking her to the Wedge Overlook in Emery county.  Hopefully she will do well in that area.  There are virtually no areas I know of, to release a bird, where their are no humans close by.  Sad, but that's the reality of things.  I'll attempt to get some photo's tomorrow and post them for everyone. 


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