Wednesday, July 16, 2014

And the craziness continues...........................................

It's been awhile since our last post.  So much has happened in that time, so I'll just go over some highlights.  Many more patients have needed our services and we have released many others when ready.  This year is the year of the Coopers Hawk and of course, the Golden Eagle.  The Golden's just keep coming and coming, mostly hit-by-vehicles.  This is always concerning, but the State has recently acknowledged a decline in the Golden population and it's of enough concern that they are monitoring nestlings in many nests by putting telemetry back packs on them while still in the nest.
They are doing this with the help of Hawk Watch International.  There may be others involved, but I only  know of HWI.  I'm sure there are several factors involved, not just one.  This isn't a result of the cyclical aspects of their prey either.  Something else is going on.  We will just keep doing our part with helping those that need rehabilitation in some way.

Our fundraiser went really well.  I have such wonderful support from that area and Yrma, Dave and Sara really worked their butts off gathering support, donations and working on the event itself.  We had many local artists support our work.  I personally appreciate everyones work and support.

These are Say's Phoebe's.  They came in after they were orphaned.  Their mother had built her nest in a camp trailer.  When the owners left to go camping, they heard these little guys chirping for their mother.  Long gone, they needed to come into rehab.  They have grown like feathery weeds, which we love of course.  They need to learn to eat on their own and then, they can be released back where they belong.
We recently released two little Cedar Waxwings, brought to us after being found on the ground, hopping down a sidewalk.  These two little ones had fledged a little too early and were clearly not ready to leave the nest so we helped them along with a proper diet and when they learned what they should be eating and ate on their own, they were released near Price.  We hope they are successful and live to produce many babies to add to their population.
Sadly, these releases don't get as much attention as a Golden eagle release or something larger, but they are just as important to us and take a great deal of time and expertise to do this correctly.  These little lives matter!

This little guy is a Western Bluebird.  He came in as a 'mystery' bird.  Very small and no feathers at that point.  He was found in a nest cavity with his siblings down near the Four-Corners region of Utah.  He was the only one found alive as the tree had fallen and the nestlings were all killed except for this little guy.  We knew he was probably an insect eater as most cavity nester's are, so once we could identify him, we knew we were correct and his nutritional needs had been met.  He will soon be released.  The finders had named him Milton, so Milton it is!

We have had several Golden Eagles come in.  Most recently, two fledglings from near Moab.  Both had recently come off the nest and were already in trouble.  Parent birds were not seen in either case.  The two are not related and came from different nests.  Both are females and were starving and dehydrated.  One has burns to the pads of her feet from being on the hot pavement of highway 191.  Both were also covered in lice as happens frequently in these situations.  Lice are opportunistic, so when something is down and not doing well, they take advantage of the situation.  Both are going to make it I believe and in time, will be released.  They have a lot of weight they need to gain and many things to learn in order to be successful in the wild, before they leave us.  This will take a few months.  We have to teach them what they would be learning from their parents at this point in their young lives.

We recently released another Golden Eagle from near the Four-Corners area.  She had been hit by a vehicle and was transported to us by DWR.  We met them in Green River, Utah and amazingly, this bird had no fractures, just a slight concussion.  We gave her some time and made sure she had no long term effects of the concussion and released her at the top of Indian Canyon in June.  Todd had the honors that day.  As always, all of our raptors are banded with federal USFW bands before being released back into the wild.  This gal also had been banded the day of her release as well.

We hope she is successful in her life.  She is a two year old bird, so clearly knows how to hunt and kill so we did not need to go through that step with her.

Thanks for checking in.  I'll try to update again here soon, but we are right in the middle of busy season for all wildlife rehabilitators everywhere.  Remember, please support your local wildlife rehabilitator.  A call to your local State wildlife office will tell you who that is.  We are professionals that spend our lives caring for our native wildlife.


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