These babies, whose species is still uncertain, came in after a feral cat wandered into the rescuer’s yard and knocked the nest out of a tree. The rescuer, a young girl, saved five of the six nestlings from the cat but fed them watered-down milk overnight. Once again, folks, birds don’t have boobs—they cannot digest milk properly! Luckily, these babies seem to be doing well so far, although you can still see bits of dried milk on their little faces. The stuff sticks to their skin like glue; I’m flaking it off bit by bit to avoid ripping skin off with it. Their begging cry sounds familiar, but I can’t quite place it. I know what they’re NOT: they’re not mockers or robins or bluebirds or any of the other birds I commonly see in rehab this time of year. By next week, as the feathers come in, we should be able to identify these wee ones. In the meantime, the guessing games are an endless source of amusement and bemusement.
The mocker has been released but is still coming down for supplemental feedings. While he can be irritating at times as he sits 20 feet above me begging for food, it doesn’t take him long to figure out that he’s gotta come closer if he wants anything from me.
The dove has also been released—no shots of the release, as she took off like a shot as soon as I offered her the option. I didn’t even have time to attempt to focus the camera on her!
Yesterday while I was cleaning her cage, she flew out. Wait—read that again. Never mind, I’ll repeat it. SHE FLEW OUT. She then proceeded to fly all around the rehab area. It wasn’t pretty flight, but a) she wasn’t supposed to ever fly again and b) she’d been confined for three months on the assumption that she was nonflighted.
Today she went into the flight pen, where she’s happily flitting about in short bursts as she regains her stamina. Once she’s had sufficient time to build her strength back up, I’ll be releasing her. Sometimes being proven wrong puts the biggest grin on your face…