Monday, October 11, 2010

This Week at Liberty 10/11/2010

The intake total for the year is now at 3028.
For a "quieter" time of year, this past week has been a little hectic, beginning with a massive storm or set of storms last Monday night. Alicia was working the hotline as night fell - along with lots of rain and hail. It was her first time ever on the hotline and at one point she had three rescues working simultaneously! With lots of power outages and related problems, finding a willing rescue person was difficult, and some who were willing couldn't go because the roads to the rescue sites were closed. She finally got in contact with Jackie who did all three rescues: an RTH, a peregrine (that was standing waist deep in water in an unlighted school parking lot), and a flammulated owl! Hats off to Alicia and Jackie for weathering the "Perfect Storm" in true Liberty fashion!
On to this week...
Anne and Heddy - "Together Again!"
Last Wednesday was the Flying Start - the annual kickoff for the Wishes for Wildlife fundraiser to be held next Spring. Held at the beautiful Paradise Valley Country Club, many Liberty Education Volunteers and avian Ambassadors were present to greet and educate Guardians and prospective Guardians about who we are and why what we do is so important. The setting was gorgeous as were the birds including Lance who performed a perfect flight display for the crowd.
Few baby birds arrive in their own baskets complete with stuffed toys.
The little inca dove is already sporting his characteristic red wings.
OK, it's either very late, or very early for baby birds to be arriving. Last week a nice individual brought in a baby inca dove, delivering the little bird in a beautiful basket equipped with his own stuffed animal toy to keep him company in his new surroundings. A bit off schedule, he will be cared for by the Medical Services team as the OC squad has already been furloughed for the year.
A sad little elf owl arrives.
A tiny wing gets a yellow wrap.
Another diminutive arrival was this injured elf owl. Elf owls are actually one of the most common owls in Arizona, but they are so small that they are often mistaken for either bats or moths as they fly at night looking for the insects that are their main prey. We don't get a lot of them in at Liberty, probably because birds that size don't survive much trauma - it doesn't take much to cause serious damage to a bird so small and fragile. This little guy probably collided with a window or a car and suffered, among other things, a fractured wing.
Katrina examines a neo-tropical cormorant's wing.
He was involved "hook, line, and sinker"...
A mass of monofilament, steel, and lead.
All-in-all, a lucky bird.
Veteran Rescue & Transport volunteer Carl Price brought in a neo-tropical cormorant on Sunday morning. The bird was seen at a local lake trailing fishing line and unable to fly. On his arrival, it was discovered he had a large mass of fishing line complete with lead sinkers and steel hook wrapped around his body and one wing. With Carl's help, Katrina carefully unwrapped the length of line and cut the tangle from his wing. the hook had not embedded itself so the damage was minimal. The lucky bird will be observed for a short period and then hopefully released. Another professional fisherman nearly done in by a careless amateur.
The entry wound.
Katrina searches the exit wound for the projectile.
The pellet is found and removed.
A small piece of lead can do lots of damage.

The big girl gets a purple wrap.
OK, so it's hunting season. There is still no excuse for shooting a large red-tailed hawk! This beautiful RTH came in that same day with a presentation consistent with a gunshot injury. Katrina recognized this and after determining the entry and exit wounds, she carefully examined the area and found the lead pellet still lodged in the bird's wing. The offending projectile was removed and the wing wrapped until further exam - possibly X-rays - can determine the extent of the damage. People, its not only stupid and cruel to shoot birds like this, it's also highly illegal. If you ever see anyone involved in this type of activity, please call the AZG&F Operation Game Thief hot line at 1-800-352-0700, a 24/7 toll-free number to report the incident.


Anonymous said...

Another great edition. Thanks.....that lead projectile that was removed from the RTH is most definately a .22 cal pellet from an air rifle. They are not a BB gun. They have the velocity and killing power of other small caliber rifles. They are a dangerous weapon.


Deborah said...

Megan, you brought some tears to my eyes about Apache. I hope he is able to enjoy his retirement, but it is so sad that they can't do anything about his cataracts!