What do we do when we see a bird out of place!

What do we do when we see a bird out of place!

It's happened to all of us, we see a baby bird and we are afraid it has been abandoned, is lost or injured, or that it will get hit by a car or killed by a cat or dog.   Our instinct is to get the bird!  Well then what????

If you are in the States or Canada you probably have access to all sorts of Animal Rescue, Department of Wildlife, Humane Societies, or even just rescue groups that specialize in a particular thing.

But before you start intervening - Take a few minutes - Is the bird obviously injured?  

Observe the bird for a short while.  If it is in fact injured, and if you can safely get it, then yes!  Grab it!

If it is not obviously injured it could be just fledging (learning how to fly and forage on its own).
It could be a migratory bird just resting.  It could be a young adult staking its claim.

A friend recently had an experience with a bird out of place.  My friend lives in a very residential area.  So to see a Robin, or Goldfinch, or any one of a multitude of city dwelling birds in her back yard would be no cause for alarm. 

But she saw this, at night, in a rainstorm.  First instinct is of course to grab it up.  

No matter how out of place it seems, or how much it seems to want in!  Just take the time to watch it.  

Unless it seems in peril leave it alone.  Watch it, assess it.
She's a smart one this friend of mine.  She left the bird alone, watched it, and kept the dogs away from it.

The bird was still in her back yard come morning.  Oh Dear, what to do, what to do!  Especially here, where we have almost no Wildlife Rescue resources...   

What she did next was to take some pictures and reach out to her network, she sent, and posted the pictures and asked the questions; what is it, and should it be in my yard?

This bird appears to be a Bittern, to my eye a Least Bittern.  Bitterns are water birds, marshes and swampy areas.  So in her backyard did not seem right.  This also appears, to my eye to be a young bird.  Perhaps it got disoriented in the rain as it was migrating??

So come morning, and after the consult of her network, it was decided this bird should go to a local AcuaParque where other Bitterns, as well, as Herons, Egrets, Wood-Rails, and a multitude of other birds reside.

She corralled the bird into a box and kept in safe till she could transport it.

So she found her way to the AcuaParque and let the little birdie go!  

Check this out, it is very cool!

escaping the box!

woohoo, water, minners, yum!

ah, home!

look, a new friend!

She did everything right.   Don't jump to a conclusion and grab a bird up, you could do more damage than good.

Especially when birds are fledging they will be on the ground, they will be disoriented and fly or jump about erratically  They will be left alone, but parents do return, so if you do need them out of your yard, don't take them too far, mom and dad still need to call out and hear their reply to find them.

Happy Endings!