Tuesday, October 06, 2009

It was a good day, but ...

Around 1:30 pm today I got a call from the nature center I volunteer at. They needed a pick-up of an injured red-tailed hawk in my area, and it needed to be transported the hour or so up to KC.

So I called hubby, who had just gotten to the campus for class and let him know we had been called in to do a rescue. It was our first. A few months we had gotten a call about a Barred Owl, but another volunteer caught the call before we could get back to them.

So we gathered everything we needed, after letting professors know we wouldn't make it to our classes, and set off for a little town about 12 miles north of us. (I LUV my profs. Bio/Earth Sci rocks. No a one batted an eye at us needing to miss class to rescue an injured animal)

We collected the hawk and got it up to KC, and let me tell you, it felt good to do this. I am a raptor lover, I just think the birds of prey are cool. So to get to help one like this was an awe inspiring moment for me. It's one thing to cut up food and clean cages and all at the rehab center and something quite different to have one sitting in a pet carrier in the back seat giving you the evil eye while you are driving it to be cared for.

Unfortunately, it's leg was broke, and looks to be an older break. So it had been able to work around it. But it's wing also got damaged by a car and it looks to be an older bird. They are taking it for x-rays tomorrow to see if rehabbing it is a viable option.

We try very hard to save all of the animals we can. But when a wing is damaged so badly that it will never mend in such a way that the bird will fly again, and when it is an older bird and would not tolerate captivity (for such things as being an education animal) then it is more humane to put it down.

The poor thing was half starved, massively dehydrated, and pretty badly beat up. Collision with car will do that.

Supposed to get a call tomorrow, and I am crossing my fingers it will be good news. But I fear for the worst.

But even if it does have to be put down, it is a heck of a lot better than it starving to death.

The lady who found the bird did the right thing too. She called around and got it help, she kept it in an area away from domestic animals, and she didn't try to feed or water it. Sometimes, letting a wild animal go without for a few hours is a lot better than feeding it the wrong thing.

So all in all, it was a good day. But I worry about what tomorrow will bring ...

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