Where: Northland Pines High School, Eagle River, WI
When: Saturday and Sunday, March 3rd and 4th, 2012 from 9am to 4pm.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Where: Northland Pines High School, Eagle River, WI
Monday, February 20, 2012
Thursday, February 16, 2012
Everyone from the recent blogs are alive and well in the clinic. Eagle #008 is on a break from his lead chelation shots, and things are looking very good for him! We will test his blood lead level again soon. He may not need another round of treatments which has us all excited! Juliet got a mouse treat fresh out of the mouse trap this morning, so she is in good spirits.
Monday, February 13, 2012
Friday, February 10, 2012
We admitted a Barred Owl that has been hit by a vehicle near Aniwa, WI. His left eye has been injured, but we won’t know the extent of the injury until he opens his eye. He also has a broken wing which has been taped to allow it to heal. The blood you see around his beak in the photo is from his internal injuries. Vehicle strikes produce multiple injuries, which each on their own would be a challenge to overcome. Combining them all at once can be more than some birds can handle. The good news is that he has been standing the past three mornings and appears to be alert. We are very hopeful for this handsome guy. He has a very calm and gentle demeanor and he would make a wonderful father. It is likely that he has a mate in the wild, but luckily Barred Owls have not begun laying eggs quite yet. It would be very difficult for a single parent to raise a nest-full of owlets on their own. We are trying to be optimistic and hope he can return to his mate soon. He will miss out on this breeding season, but he hopefully has many more breeding seasons in his future.
We had a wonderful donation of venison earlier this week. We are extremely thankful to receive donations such as this road-killed deer, but people may not realize the amount of work that goes into preparing a whole deer for feeding to multiple raptors. The work of a rehabilitator is not just about healing injured birds and releasing them. Most of the time is spent preparing food and cleaning up after hundreds of birds. Meat usually doesn’t arrive at REGI prepackaged and on a tray like it does at the grocery store. Whole animals arrive with fur and guts; most of which needs to be removed. It isn’t a glamorous job, but it is an incredibly important part of being a rehabilitator. We are thankful every single day for these donations and for the hard work of our rehabilitation team.
We want to shine a little spotlight on one of our very dedicated volunteers. Ted Bengtson, a retired dentist from the area, has been volunteering at REGI twice a week since the end of summer. He keeps REGI looking beautiful and keeps us safe by helping with snow and ice removal. Before the snow fell, he groomed the gravel paths leading to each enclosure. On days when there is no snow to shovel, he cleans the floors to perfection. These necessary tasks are sometimes challenging to complete ourselves when we have critical patients in the clinic, paperwork to do, and education programs to present. Thank you, Ted, for all of your help!
We had a small group visit us from UW-Stevens Point on Thursday. Two are veterinary students from Japan, Yusaku Watanabe and Tomoka Tsuji. We had a wonderful time getting to know them and showing them around REGI. I really enjoyed learning about the amazing birds of Japan. We share a number of the same species with Japan such as Peregrine Falcons, Long-eared Owls, Short-eared Owls, and Golden Eagles, just to name a few. It was fun watching Yusaku recognize many of the birds we have here in Wisconsin. We showed them proper handling techniques and they were both able to work with a bird on their glove for a short time. An experience they will probably not soon forget!
Photo above: Vet students, Yusaku Watanabe and Tomoka Tsuji, pose with a Harris's Hawk and a Barn Owl.
A bit of sad news... the lovely Spruce Grouse lost her battle with her dog bite injuries. It is a shame that she has to be an example of why it is to important for people to keep their pets under control. The dogs are not at fault, they are only doing what dogs do; people need to step up and take responsibility for their pets. Dogs and cats are not "natural" predators; they were brought here by people. People breed them in excess and let them run wild. For that reason, people are responsible when a pet kills or injures an animal. On top of that, many pets are lost every year to the road; don't let your pet become road-kill. For the sake of wild animals everywhere and for the safety of your own pet, please be a responsible pet owner and keep your pets under control.
I know many of you out there are keeping tabs on Eagles #007 and #008, and beautiful Red-tailed Hawk, Juliet. I am very pleased to tell you that all three are doing well! Thank you for all of your kind words and thoughts. It truly does help.
Have a wonderful weekend everyone! I hope you can dig out from under all of this beautiful fresh snow!
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
|#008 is alert and showing improvement.|
|The female Spruce Grouse rests with evergreen bows which help to make her feel at home.|
|Lovely, Juliet. |
I found her standing on her perch again today; a sign she is feeling better.
Monday, February 6, 2012
|Drawing blood to recheck 007. He is a great patient.|
On the other hand #008 lead levels have dropped more than we anticipated. He is still anemic, but less than when he was admitted which indicates his internal bleeding has stopped. He has a ways to go with the internal organ trauma and wing fracture, but gratefully the lead poisoning is resolving. He is a spirited eagle and just wants to get home as soon as possible. That is our plan for him as well, so we are on the same page. :)
|#008 is anxious to get home again. His lead level |
is coming down well.
Sunday Don and I drove to Plainfield, WI to rescue a Sandhill Crane that was behaving oddly. It turns out the crane had been kept as a "pet". He is very tame and either was released or escaped from the people that raised him. His wings were clipped. That indicates the humans in his life did not want him to leave the area.
It is illegal to keep native migratory birds without special state and federal permits, but even more troubling this beautiful male crane is imprinted to humans. That means he does not know he is a crane and will never be able to be free in the wild. We will look for placement in a zoo or nature park somewhere in the U.S.
We have had a problem in the Portage and Wood County areas for the past several years. It seems someone is taking either very young babies or eggs and raising the chicks as pets. The folks involved are likely well meaning, but do not understand that imprinting is a permanent situation with these species. From what we have been able to put together from past years, the cranes and geese are raised with large dogs as they are playful with dogs often to their demise. They are "released" after they are grown, but because they are human imprints they have no idea what to do. They are not accepted by the wild cranes. They end up coming up to people and dogs and even coyotes, which never ends well for them.
|This beautiful male Sandhill Crane was raised in captivity and went to people for food.|
|We are over-wintering ten Sandhill Cranes at REGI. |
The new guy is on the far left. His "brother" in in the foreground center.
|Our education red-tailed hawk has West Nile Virus blindness. |
She can no longer be in the wild,
but does a great job educating the public.
|Juliet is improving.|
Saturday, February 4, 2012
Electrocuted Bald Eagle, Lead Poisoned Bald Eagle Updates, Great-horned Owl Release, Sandhill Crane and More
|The eyes of a Great-horned Owl are huge. While they appear globe-like, they are actually tubular. |
Check out more about owl vision on a super resource, the Owl Pages .http://www.owlpages.com/articles.php?section=Owl+Physiology&title=Vision
|Avian Rhabilitator, Alberta Halfmann and Tristan Pesavento with the male GHO Tristan rescued. As with all owl releases, this one took place near dark.|
This release was all the sweeter because 14 yr old Tristan Pesavento, the person that actually rescued this GHO, was on hand to give him his freedom once more. Everyone was delighted with the release but no one was happier than the owl. He flew out of sight immediately and was last seen making a bee line for his nest tree. This is breeding season for Great-horned Owls in our area. It is important to get him "home" as soon as possible. No doubt he has important work to do. His mate may be on a nest.
Super job Tristan! While we would not suggest someone Tristans age take on this kind of responsibility, the owl would not have lived long trapped in the fenceline. His quick thinking was important and we are so proud!
|Home sweet home for the male GHO.|
Our patients are conditioned in large flight buildings. The ceiling is 28' high. They are not close to us. It is vital that all birds when released are 100% when they leave REGI. Each patient receives an exit physical the day of release. With the bird "in hand" we can evaluate things that are not readily apparent as they exercise. In this way we are certain the bird is in perfect health and condition and can once again survive in the wild. We did 2 GHO physicals Wednesday, but only one was ready. The other continues to recover from a head injury and was put back in the flights with two other GHO patients.
|This male GHO has a little longer to wait before he is released.|
Alberta Halfmann and Stacy Wild assit Marge with the exam.
|007 is on a hiatus from his CA EDTA injections. |
Blood will be drawn today to check his blood lead levels.
Have a great day everyone,