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