Friday, September 28, 2012

Time for Lunch, Little Owl

This barred owl is not feeling so great. He was found standing in the middle of a road last week, unable to fly. We treated the bird for head trauma (we are pretty sure he was struck by a car), but he's still a little dopey. 

Watch a video of this owl being fed!

When the owl first arrived into our care, he was a bit dehydrated, so we gave him fluids orally for several days. But now the owl must eat on his own; it's important the birds in our care maintain a healthy weight. We left several mice in his enclosure the past few nights, but he has been unwilling to eat on his own. So we're helping him out by hand-feeding him mouse meals.

In the above two photos, the owl is hand-fed small mice.
Hopefully, the owl will continue to feel better, and will begin eating on his own soon. We want to return this raptor back into the wild -- where he belongs!

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Intrepid Duck

This young mallard duck came into our care in early August after a woman found him sitting listless in the middle of a road. She brought the bird to VINS for help.

 Upon examination, we found the juvenile duck to be thin, weak, and suffering from head trauma (evident by the blood leaking from one of his ears). We suspect he was struck by a car and was unable to reunite himself with his family. 

Watch a video of this ducks' release!

After 36 days in our care, the duck's head trauma healed. He put on a good amount of weight, enjoyed dips in his kiddie pool, and was deemed ready to return to the wild. You'll see in this video, the young duck is a bit hesitant to take off into the water. While we couldn't reunite him with his family (as the ducks in the area of his origin were nowhere to be found), we chose a pond full of mallards. We believe a large flock of ducks is this bird's best chance for integrating himself into a group. 

And as you'll see at the end of our video, this duck swims right into a large sord of mallards! Best of luck, little duck!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Volunteers Bid Robins, Catbird Farewell

The baby bird season here at VINS -- in which we take in injured and orphaned baby birds and care for them -- is coming to a quick close. Most birds in Vermont have finished breeding and some have even hit the road south.
VINS baby bird feeders begin releasing a group of robins. Watch the video!
Last week, some of VINS' baby bird feeders -- a group of dedicated summer volunteers -- had the opportunity to release a group of American robins and one gray catbird who were raised at VINS by staff and the volunteers. The robins all came in as babies -- some attacked by cats while in the nest, some orphaned, some who sustained injuries after falling from their nest. 

All grown up and ready to go, these robins took to the skies in the flash of an eye, as you will see in our video. Though these birds had a rough start to life, they are all living in the wild now.
Our baby bird feeders release the last of the robins.
A HUGE thank you to all of our baby bird feeders for summer 2012. Your many hours of volunteerism -- feeding nestling and fledglings, cleaning up after them, and noticing when some were struggling -- have been so greatly appreciated. The Wildlife Services staff and all the happy birds living in the wild (thanks to your care) THANK YOU!