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

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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