Monday, July 26, 2010

This Week at Liberty 07/26/2010

The intake total for the year stands at 2478.
We're still getting in some younger birds, but the ration of juvies to babies is rising. The good news is that some of our earlier arrivals are now at the point that they are being released! We also have had another success in one of our non-avian patients who was returned to his home last week! The cycle continues...
Another baby green heron gets a check out.
"Biting the hand that wraps you"
Another little green heron baby was brought in this week. This little guy not only is an orphan, but he has an injured wing as well. Luckily, birds at this age heal rapidly and he'll hopefully be fine when he's old enough to go free. He was very animated as he was treated, biting Sharon's hand as she held him for his wing wrap.
The beautiful young RTH.
Everything seems to be intact!
The young red-tailed hawk that showed up for help early last week (see TW@L 07/19) is doing well. He didn't present any obvious trauma as his wings, tail, feet, etc., all seemed to work as designed. His only problem was that he was very thin. The fluids and food he received seemed to have helped and he is now out of the brooder and is joining his new siblings with his foster parents outside.
Dr. Orr and Jan prepare to examine the gila monster.
Dr.Orr depresses a dangerous tongue!
The jaw has healed well.
Jan gets a final weight.
Late last May, Carl brought in a gila monster from up north with a broken jaw (see TW@L 5/23/2010). He was x-rayed on a special dental x-ray machine and his jaw was confirmed to be broken. The bones healed slowly - a trait of reptilian construction - but finally solidified to the point that he was deemed ready for release. He had lost weight, living off the fat stored in his tail, but was otherwise healthy. Carl brought him back up to Kingman and our friend Kenny was able to release him in his own territory!
A sad little GHO with a problem.
A strange growth led to a deeper exam.
A little great horned owl has been with us, presenting an unusual growth on one of his feet. It was hoped that removing this might solve his problems, but an x-ray revealed that it involved more than his foot. The joints in his upper legs were also affected and it appeared it was some kind of genetic abnormality. After careful consideration of all options by Dr. Orr and Dr. Driggers, it was decided the most effective and humane course of action would be to euthanize him. Sometimes tough choices have to be made.
Our little barn owl is growing up fast!
His weaponry works fine!
The little barn owl that has been in our ICU for several weeks now is almost ready to join some older kids in foster care. His feathers are growing in nicely and even though he might have seemed a little tolerant at first, he can exhibit his aggressive side at will - a trait that will serve him well in the real world when he is eventually released!
"Hmmm, what will I be?"
Primary feathers are still developing.
Art holds as Jan prepares to give fluids.
On his way back from Kingman (after delivering the gila monster), Carl brought this little guy down. It was first reported to be a juvenile sharp-shinned hawk, but it turned out to be this little fledgling swainson's. This is great news for our expectant swainson's foster mom, Evita. She has been in major nesting mode for weeks, pining away for a youngster to brood which she is now doing with great relish!
Release #1!
Release #2!
Release #3!

"Per ardua, ad astra!"*
The great news is that some of our earlier arrivals are now healed and to the point of release. This week three injured harris' hawks got to go free in the park north of Piestewa Peak. Three youngsters from a family of Liberty supporters got the honor of releasing the three birds in a perfect area for HaHas on a perfect day for a release. And what a great lesson in nature and life for three wonderful young people. The kids and the birds all did well!
(*Through struggles, to the stars! - the motto of the Royal Air Force)

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