Monday, January 24, 2011

This Week at Liberty 01/24/2011

The intake total for 2011 is now at 56.
This week we had the usual suspects - a couple of owls, some kestrels, another merlin - oh, and a California Condor. This update will center largely on the big guy as he is the talk of the facility. But the rest of the patients still get all the same care so we'll show the range in size of the current birds in our care, starting with...
A little hummingbird gets some food.
An injured wing needs time to heal.
As the temperature drops, we seem to get more hummers brought to our window. When the thermometer goes below a certain threshold, humming birds tend to go into a torpid state where they appear almost dead. This conserves critical energy used for thermoregulation. Unfortunately, sometimes when they are in torpor, they fall victim to things that they are able to evade when they are mobile. This little guy needed some safe time to heal a damaged wing.
Lilly checks for a break.
Stevie holds as Lilly gives fluids.
"I am NOT happy right now!"
More falcons arrived, including this little male kestrel with a wing injury. Again, these birds all become tunnel-visioned when they are in pursuit of their prey and sometimes collide with things in their way. This small bird was struck by a car as he was chasing something for dinner.
On the way to surgery. (photo by Allen Spencer)
This guy needs a BIG mask! (photo by Allen Spencer)
The anesthesia record tells the short, grim story. (photo by Allen Spencer)
Jan listens to a big heart. (photo by Allen Spencer)
Dr. Orr begins to operate. (photo by Allen Spencer)
The crop is opened for draining and cleaning. (photo by Allen Spencer)
Sharon supports his large head. (photo by Allen Spencer)
Sutures are carefully placed. (photo by Allen Spencer)
Ready for the recovery... (photo by Allen Spencer)
His weight is checked - 18 lbs. (photo by Allen Spencer)
The next day, fluids are again given.
The open crop is irrigated.
On Monday, he gets to eat some liver.
Up on the perch in recovery.

122 is a very handsome bird!
Last week, another of the Arizona flock of California Condors was brought in with a familiar problem: crop stasis due to high lead levels. Dr. Orr operated on the big bird last week and opened the distressed crop, cleaned it, and left it open for a slightly different form of therapy. Instead of a tube bypassing the crop, a tube is placed through it when the bird needs food until he is eating on his own. In the meantime, the open crop is easier to clean and monitor for healthy activity and this procedure doesn't seem as stressful to the bird. He seems to be doing nicely at this point.
Hopefully he will be healthy soon and travel back north to be released. We'll keep you posted.
Our hearts go out to our staffer, R&C Lead Biologist, and friend, Nina Grimaldi, who lost her mother this week. She and her family are in our hearts and thoughts.

1 comment:

Andrea said...

Wow! Great post and pics Terry! I have been wondering how the big guy has been doing since last Thursday J Can’t wait to hear about his release J

Andrea (hotline/Thurs Owl Team)