Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Talk to the Eagle gods

BE 06-42 came to us from USF&W in the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. He was caught in a snare trap that wrapped around his left wing and his body. There seems to be no broken bones but he's bruised up pretty good. Cindy had trouble trying to get it to take an iv, so we had to tube feed it to get some fluids in it.

This guy needs a little more help then what we can give him. Talk to whoever you talk to when the lights go out and have them send him a little extra help.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Anything for a good friend

A good friend of mine, Britt Coon is studying to be a photographer. So I had asked her to take some pictures of me and Ghost whenever she had some free time. I didn't expect it anytime soon because she's as busy as I am if not busier. To my surprise she called me around lunch time and asked if today was a good day for her to come over.

I had to weigh my options. Clean house, repair stuff, etc. or play with ghost and have our picture taken. So as a favor to Britt, I said yes. Does it look like +1° to you in these pictures? She does an awesome job, doesn't she.

So your welcome Britt. I gave up cleaning house and fixing stuff so you could take pictures. But then, anything for a friend.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Good Bird

A Thanksgiving meal made for a Snowy Owl. "Ghost" had a lot to be thankful for, 6 large mice and a chick. I got his attention when I went into his mew. I don't think he went to bed hungry.

Today it's back to training.

There was one bird that didn't make it though.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thankgiving

I hope everyone has a Safe & Happy Thanksgiving Day. I know I have a lot to be thankful for. Healthy family, good friends and healthy birds at the house and hopefully healthy ones at the clinic.

I have a lot more to be thankful for, and I am, but it's too much to list here. I'll be going over them in my mind later after dinner when I'm on the couch watching the games through the cracks of my eyes.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

BE 06-41 doing OK

We're a little sore and a little bored, but so far we're doing OK.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

BE 06-41 Surgery

Dr Todd Palmatier spent about 1.5 hours in surgery with BE 06-41 inserting internal and external pins for the two broken bones. Well know in about 2-3 weeks if it's going to heal well. It looks good now and we have our feathers crossed. There's more photo's here.

Update on GE 06-40

I recieved a call from the clinic this morning that the Golden Eagle BE 06-40 that tangled with the porcipine passed away during the night last night.

Friday, November 17, 2006

BE 06-41 arrived yesterday by plane

This imature Bald Eagle lost a battle with a small plane in Homer, Alaska. His left wing is broke at the radius and ulna, both. He was sent to us by USF&W via a pet clinic. I picked him up at the air freight terminal.

Dr Todd Palmatier examined him at Bird TLC and wrapped his wing up for now. He needs to stabilize, eat a little and get some fluids. Maybe on Saturday we'll have a pin placed.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

#40 is Golden

#40 was brought to us by Elmendorf AFB Wildlife Management at about 4PM. He was found on the ground and not really caring about much of anything. Dan our office manager gave me a heads up call that he would be coming in. I told him I was just a few minutes away from the clinic.

When I arrived, Dan and the Wildlife Officer were putting him into a kennel. I told Dan I would take him straight to Pet Stop. Cindy, our Rehab Director is at a conference in Florida right now and the Bird TLC clinic crew had left for the day. Dr Todd Palmatier volunteers his time with us but was at work. I was bringing him a patient.

When we got there we took him out of the kennel and layed him down on the exam table. I restrained him while Dr Todd examined him. He hadn't eaten in a while and was very dehydrated. The last thing he had eaten though was a porcupine. He had quills in his mouth and tongue and all over his feet. It was obvious that it would hurt to eat.

He was very cooperative on having the quills removed. There were so many I lost count. When we were done we gave him 100CC's of LRS and tube feed him. From there I took him back to Bird TLC and bedded him down for the night.

I checked in on him today (see pic above) and he looked a lot better. He had eaten a quail and is drinking on his own. We'll get him fatten up real soon.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Too late to migrate?

The black-and-white Common Goldeneye is one of the last ducks to migrate south in fall. It often will winter as far north as open water permits. The waters around Anchorage have been frozen for over a week now. Most lakes and ponds are safe to walk on but not safe to drive on yet.

We're getting birds in the clinic now that waited too long to migrate and now they have problems. This guy should have taken the trip south at least 2 weeks ago. Now, if he wasn't brought into Bird TLC, he would have had a real hard time finding food and his web feet freeze easily on the ice.

There are many reasons why he waited too long. He's sick or injured and isn't strong enough to make the trip. Another is that he got use to being feed by humans and was waiting for one more hand out.

I also made this mistake in the past. Like many others, I didn't know any better. In Anchorage, there is a municipal code against the feeding of ducks and geese. There is no shortage of their natural food source, so they really don't need the help from us.

Another reason to refrain from feeding geese is that the foods commonly used, such as bread and french fries, are nutritionally inadequate and cause serious, potentially deadly impactions of the crop. Geese don't know when to stop eating, and the large quantity and the low quality of food combines to create disastrous results. Young birds often develop nutrition deficiencies resulting in crippling deformities. Most of the time they die or have to be euthanized because by the time we receive them the damage is irreversible.

The number of eggs laid by a pair of ducks or geese is in direct proportion to the amount of food available. When food is artificially added to an area by people feeding wildlife, the birds will over-populate an area very quickly. They also will remain in the area longer, contaminating the environment, making it unhealthy for people as well as wildlife.

Another good reason to avoid feeding geese is for their own protection - to ensure they retain their fear of humans. You may not pose a threat to their survival, but if they do not fear ALL humans, they are bound to run into an unfriendly one sooner or later.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Thanks to our Veterans

As the nation observes Veterans Day, Alaska is taking particular pride. The U.S. Census Bureau says Alaska has more veterans per capita of it's civilian adult population than any other state. Veterans make up 17% of Alaska's population over 18 compared to 11% of the nation as a whole

I chose this state after I was stationed on Elmendorf AFB almost 11 years. I retired to stay here and not be reassigned to Washington DC. I also wanted my kids to be raised here. A state that I found with less crime and racism than any state I had ever visited. It's not a perfect state and we don't always agree how the other states do. My favorite bumper sticker is "I don't give a damn how they do it outside".

Politics is never boring, and either is the fishing, hunting or birding. I have made the best friends I ever had the past 22 years I've lived here. What's funny is, most aren't veterans. But the veterans are the ones that provide for what we cherish the most, freedom. Freedom to live, work, worship, disagree and so many others. They protect us when we're awake and asleep. In my career I worked many holidays, birthdays, days and nights. I've been to places that were awesome and places I don't want to even think about. My own safety was in the hands of others, white, black or yellow. Didn't matter. You watched out for them and they did for you, not thinking of your own safety over theirs.

Now the younger ones do their duty. I see them everyday on the news and around town. They are the best of the best. They aren't perfect, but who among us are. I sleep well at night because of our veterans. Veterans of all ages, colors, politics, nationality, etc. But I do wish for a day when we don't need them.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Get your tickets NOW

Tickets are now available for "For The Birds". The 2007 Bird TLC Online, Silent & Live Auction is to be held February 3rd at the ConocoPhillips Atrium In Anchorage. The auctioneer and entertainment is Mr. Whitekeys of the "Fly By Night" fame. Dinner and non-alcoholic drinks will be servered. A no host bar will also be available.

Tickets are $50 each. There are special themed tables going $500 - $800 each. Contact any member of the Auction Committee or the Bird TLC office for more information or to purchase a ticket.

Bird TLC
Visa, Mastercard, Check or Cash

Auction items are still being accepted.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Bandage & Wrap Class

Bird TLC had a bandage and wrap class taught by Cindy Palmatier yesterday. It was a full house of both new and old volunteers. A lot of fun was had along with a lot of learning. In the picture at left, a pheasant was used as our live patient. It was extremely tolerant of our practicing on it.

Thanks go out to Chris Maack for the picture.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Guess who came for dinner

and will stay longer. He's now at home in his new mew. His training name is "Ghost", Bird TLC's Snowy Owl. It took a while and a lot of work, but it's worth it.

He wasn't too sure of the new surroundings at first, but he has calmed down. He ate 6 large mice right down. I have a few small things to rearrange in the mew tomorrow, but all went well.

Sorry for the picture, it was getting dark.

Friday, November 03, 2006

More Snowy Owl stuff

Here are the pic's that Cassie took yesterday when I was working with the Snowy Owl. I feel things are coming along pretty well. I do know that he is testing me on a few things. I am comfortable with it though. Cindy (my Mentor) is there for the work outs. I trust her. I know she won't let me do anything to harm the bird or anything where the bird would harm me. I also know she trust me or the bird wouldn't be going to my house tomorrow.

If you hadn't noticed, we got snow earlier this week. About 6 inches worth. The temperatures have been in the +20°F's during the day and single digits at night ever since. Winter is here.

Thursday, November 02, 2006


Blogger is having some issues and now is a bad time for Dave to deal with them. Right now there is no uploading of pictures which sucks, because my daughter Cassie took some good ones of my work out with the Snowy Owl today. I'll post them as soon as Blogger allows it.

The amount of problems Blogger has makes me want to make a change, but I haven't the time to deal with it right now, so it will have to wait. I'm training with the Snowy Owl, possibly building another mew at Bird TLC, on the Auction Committee and plus my work and personal life. No time to move or start another blog. Bare with me as I wait out Blogger like many others.

On the good news side, the Snowy is moving to it's new mew at my house this Saturday.