What to do When You See an Injured Bird – Have you ever seen a bird flapping around in your yard or on the sidewalk, and wondered if it needs help? What could you possible do in this situation? As it turns out, there are ways to determine whether it’s in trouble, and what steps to take if it is. A healthy bird won’t let itself be caught in an open area. The fact that you’ve managed to catch the bird means that it’s ill or injured.
The only exclusion here is a fledgling – a young bird that falls out of the nest because it can’t fly well enough yet. You can recognize them by prominent parts at both edges of the beak and a lot of tubesin the tail, because this is usually the last part to grow. You can put the fledgling close to the nearest bush and leave it there.
But young birds can also be injured. Examine it before leaving it on the ground. Some species pretend to be injured to lead you away from the nest. If you’re chasing a bird that seemingly can’t fly, and then it rockets upwards,you’ve been conned by a cunning fowl. Even an injured bird can be really difficult to catch.
It might have broken feathers, be dragging its wings, or move in small jumps, flying just above the ground. This often happens to crows, since they’re strong enough to fight off cats. But anyway, such a bird won’t last long without the help of humans. To help or not to help, that is the question! Have you ever saved a bird or another wild animal? Let me know down in the comments.
If you just take the injured bird and bring it home, you’re probably not helping its chances of survival. You’ll have to make every effort to heal it. Think it over: can you put time and money into vets and medicine; do you have a place where you can keep it at home? Depending on the bird’s species and the severity of the illness or injury, it might take months, or even years, to find a home for it.
There’s the possibility that you may never find people who can take it. Also, if the bird was already attacked by a cat or dog, it more than likely has injuries to its inner organs, and you’ll only make it suffer longer if you bring it home. But if you’ve made up your mind to help the bird, here’s what you need to do: Examine the bird to see if it has visible injuries, and what type of injury it is. Here’s a checklist.
1. The bird might have wounds which look like traces of an animal claw or teeth. Even if you don’t see wounds or blood right away, try to examine it thoroughly, pulling apart the feathers. There can be deep wounds hidden among them. They look like holes or dried blood. In this case, you can wash the wound with an antiseptic and take it to the veterinarian,who will prescribe an antibiotic.
2. If parts of bones can be seen through the wound, the bird has an open fracture. Take the bird to the vet immediately, keeping it in a dark box so that it doesn’t panic and flap around inside. After the visit, you’ll likely have to give it injections of antibiotic.
3. If the wing or leg doesn’t move, is twisted unnaturally, or has bruises or bumps, it’s likely the bird has a closed fracture. In this case, an X-ray is necessary so that the vet can correctly diagnose it.
4. Unfortunately, wounds from hunters can also happen pretty much anywhere. The bird can be wounded, but still get away. Pellets can get stuck in soft tissues or bones, and poison the bird with heavy metals. Take it to the vet, who can extract it.
5. If the bird is lying on its belly with its legs cast away, this usually means that it has a spinal injury. Such injuries are not always serious, there might just be swelling. An X-ray can show how bad it is.
6. When several feathers are missing in the wings or tail, it’s a minor injury, since feathers will grow back, and the bird will be able to fly away. You’ll only have to keep it properly for awhile.
If there are no visible injuries, but the bird doesn’t move and has raised feathers,it can mean 2 things: First, the bird could have a head injury. Birds with a head injuries can often be found near glassy shop windows or on roads where they’ve been hit by a car. One of the possible signs is half-closed eyes, especially if only one eye is closed.
If its eyes are open, try to shine a flashlight first in one eye, and then in the other, and see how fast the pupils get smaller. If the speed differs, the bird does have a head injury. In that case, the bird has to be kept in a dark place and not given much water, since that can cause brain edema. Second, the bird could be ill. The most common symptoms are as follows:
• It turns or tilts back its head unnaturally. It might walk in circles, or miss food when trying to pick it up. • It coughs, croaks, has a runny nose, or liquid leaking from the beak.
• It has wounds on its legs • It has a white or yellow fur inside the beak.
• There’s a bad smell coming from it (this can be a sign of bad food or of living near the garbage) Bring it to the vet immediately to be correctly diagnosed and start the treatment. In any case, after the initial exam, you need to call the vet and bring the injured bird to the clinic for a professional check-up.
The vet can make a diagnosis, prescribe treatment, and give you advice on how to keep and feed it at home. To transport the bird, prepare a ventilated box with a soft towel at the bottom. Put on thick gloves, take the bird gently but firmly, and put it into the box. Be especially careful if it’s a bird of prey like an eagle or owl.
It can look weak and harmless, but still might be able to harm you when you try to grab it. Don’t try to give it food or water by yourself before you show it to the doctor. Once you’ve brought the bird home, be very careful and follow hygiene rules. There aren’t many common diseases between people and birds, but still, if the bird isill, be cautious.
• Clean the box or cage where you keep the bird as often as you can; don’t let excrements get dry and spread in the air. Use antiseptics for a wet clean, but put the bird far from chemical liquids during this time, so that it doesn’t get poisoned. • Use separate plates and bowls for the bird and wash them apart from yours or your pets’ plates.
• Don’t keep the bird close to your children or pets. Isolate it if you can.
• Wash your hands after you touch it. If you don’t make proper conditions for the bird at home, and don’t feed it correctly,it’s no use trying treating it. The basic rules for all species are:
• Don’t give the bird your own food, including bread, milk, sugar, salt, butter, etc.
• Don’t feed it from your mouth and don’t chew food up for it.
• Don’t scare the bird by standing near the cage all the time. Try to communicate with it as little as possible, or it could die of stress.
• If you keep it in a box, make sure that there’s enough air and light for it, but the holes aren’t too big for the bird to go out.
• If you use a cage, don’t cover it with a dark and dense cloth, since it won’t be able to find food and water.
• Don’t let the bird fly in the house; it can bump against some glass or fall behind furniture and get more injuries.
When the bird gets better, ask the vet if you can let it out or not. In some cases, the injuries are so severe that it’ll never be able to live in the wild again, and in others, it can spend too much time in a cage and get used to eating from the feeder. If you’ve kept it at home for longer than half a year, its muscles might be too weak to fly and get food by itself.
And never let the bird out in winter if it’s cold where you live. If you kept it in a warm house, it hasn’t grown warm feathers and won’t be able to survive the cold. And hey, good luck with that!Hey, if you learned something new today, then give the article a like and share it with a friend.