…in about equal measures this week, actually. The big news is that Igor the crow has been released, so this will almost be the Igor edition, with pix and flix of him in the flight pen and on his own. I don’t think any of the footage of him requires explanation, so…
The barred owl with the broken wing was also released, and I’m still kicking myself about this one: I had the camcorder trained on him, got some really good footage, and then reached for the still camera…as he flew away deeper into the woods. If I’d kept the camcorder on him another 10 seconds… AAAUUUGGHHH!!! Oh well…live and learn, right?
This cat-attacked house finch was mortally injured, but even if the injuries had been slight, she had “finch eye,” mycoplasmic conjunctivitis. While it is treatable, it also recurs frequently and is highly contagious to other birds, especially other finches. There’s still a lot of debate over treatment versus euthanasia for birds with “finch eye.” My policy is euthanasia, because if it’s treated and the bird is released, when (and it’s usually when, not if) it recurs, who knows how many other birds it will infect before dying itself? “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few…or the one.” (Spock of Vulcan, Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan)
Screech owls are incredibly cute at any age. This little guy is young; he’s still got a “fuzzy” head. He was found in the road with a massive concussion. Whatever vehicle whacked him took off feathers above his left eye, which was swollen nearly shut when he came in, and he’s got a nasty bruise in that bald patch, too. He’s looking some better today and is slightly more alert, but he was so out of it when he first came in that I honestly wasn’t sure he’d survive the night. Both pupils respond to light stimuli, so hopefully there’s no damage to his vision.
And in the “cuteness way out of proportion to size” category, we have this adorable little chipping sparrow fledgling. She was found near a horse barn, flopping on her back and unable to stand when righted. An exam revealed nothing broken, although the muscles in her right leg did look a little irritated. Today, two days later, she’s perching and flitting around her little enclosure, but had she remained where she was found, she would have been easy prey for just about everything. Thank you to the people who drove over 3 hours round-trip to get this little darlin’ to safety.