Monday, May 31, 2010

Baby Bird Rescue

We heard chirping in the attic one morning, a few weeks ago. A family of grackles had made a nest in our attic, going through the vent trap. It was a very hot day, and we knew we had to do something or the birds would die of dehydration. My husband climbed up there and rescued four baby birds. Some were stuck behind a beam and he had to make a hole our bedroom ceiling in order to get them out.

They had no feathers, just a little black fuzz. Their eyes weren't even open yet. We fed them water with a spoon, one drop at a time, being careful not to touch them. They were starving, poor things!

We kept them in a box, using some of the straw they had used for their attic nest as a liner. While my husband and the kids went shopping for material to make a bird house, I looked online to find out how to take care of newborn baby birds. I found out they have to eat every twenty minutes throughout the day. There was a recipe with boiled eggs and milk, supposedly the best food for baby birds. I ended up feeding them tiny pieces of wet bread, using chopsticks.

Shadow barked every time someone came close to the box, which was placed on a high, cat-proof shelf. He was so eager to see what was in the box, but I couldn't let him get too close.

I was in charge of feeding them every time the timer beeped, while the rest of my family built a bird house. It helps to have a handyman as a husband. He had a custom designed bird house ready in no time.

We transferred the babies into a bowl to be able to use the same straw as a liner for their new home.
video

My husband installed the bird house on the side of our house, near the trap where their old nest used to be, accessible through our bedroom window. Mommy Grackle found her babies and busied herself going back and forth bringing them food. My job as a baby bird nurse was over!

Three days later, the babies are settled in their new home. Don't they look comfy in there?

A week later, they're starting to have feathers. Their eyes are open! Sadly, one of the babies died. But three survived. That's very good news. Sometimes none of them survive after being handled by humans.


Two weeks later, their feathers are fully grown. Aren't they much cuter than when they were just born?


Three weeks later, we found no birds in the house. They learned how to fly! Mission accomplished!

9 comments:

Maggie McMahon said...

So enjoyed your rescue bird story. Ah, doesn't it make you feel good. Maggie

Jennifer Shirk said...

Oh, wow! How awesome is that?! Good job on the rescue!

Billy Coffey said...

Awesome! A good deed well done.

Annie McMahon said...

Maggie, yes, it did make us feel good. We're so happy they survived! Like mother, like son. I remember you telling us you rescued an eagle once. :)

Thanks for your comments, Jennifer and Billy!

Nicole MacDonald said...

Well done! Not an easy thing to do and I'm so impressed only one died :) Must be very satisfying to see them all 'grown up' *grin*

Emailman said...

Awwww :) You're all heros!

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

that is the cutest, sweetest thing ever! yay for internet! i rescued a baby bird when I was in high school (from at attic where I worked) but had no idea ow to keep it alive. It died after a week and broke my heart. So glad mama tookthem back!

Anastasia V. Pergakis said...

I have an award for you at my blog!

Stacy and Carol said...

Awww! super cute baby birdies. I love hearing the birds all Spring and Summer. Ok your from New Jersey. I hope your a fellow Bon-Jovi fan. lol
Found you on the writeoncon forum. Signed up as a follower and a twitter follower
Good luck on all your writing endeavors.
~Carol

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