All week long, it was sloooow at LWR. Constant rain predictions that turned into less moisture than if I’d just walked outside and spat meant that I couldn’t release the barred owl, so he’s still a very unhappy guest at the moment. We’re aiming at a possible Christmas Eve release if the weather clears.
The flyers—all 7—are increasingly camera-shy, so while I see them eating and being adorable, the second I break out the camera, the little sweethearts scurry to the safety of their nests, so…sorry, no new pix of them this week…
After a week of no new activity, Friday a gentleman called with an osprey he’d found in his cotton field in Toombs County, south of me. We met, and a quick parking lot exam showed a thinnish bird—although it’s hard to tell with ospreys pre-weighing, because they’re naturally skinny birds, anyway—with several broken flight feathers and a scab on the right wing. Nothing seemed broken, and he had a death grip on a half-eaten bass, so I boxed him and took him to Smalley’s Animal Hospital, where an exam by vet Peggy Hobby confirmed no fractures. Peggy clipped the broken feathers while we had four hands available—mine to control and hers to clip. His little heart felt like it was going to beat out of his chest, and I’ve never had even the most spastic bird have that kind of elevated heart rate. He had not pooped at that point, so we had no poop for a fecal to test for parasites.
Friday evening, I got a call about a “baby” bird. Since this is the wrong time of year for babies, I figured the caller had either a screech owl or a small adult songbird of some sort. When I asked her for a description, her description sounded as if she had an adult chickadee—which, in fact, it was. He’d been found on the ground in some leaves and seemed sluggish and out of it. He remained very calm when I got him home and was setting up his digs for the night—calm enough to eventually perch on my finger for photos. To be honest, while chickadees have been known to land on people’s heads and glasses, this sort of calm always worries me. Still, he had no injuries, so I figured we’d just see what Saturday morning held.