Saturday, June 27, 2009

Out of town, moms and signs

Ghost and I went to the Kenai River Festival last week. Thanks to Ken and Judy Marlow for putting us up. Ghost got to spend his first night perched out at the foot of my bed. I didn't feel that he needed to stay in his kennel all night. He did pretty good for his first time. The festival was a blast.

This is baby bird time at TLC. We get loads of baby ducks, magpies, chickadee's, etc. This year we got a mom and its baby. Mom was hit by a car. Someone picked her up and what babies she could and brought them in. Mom has a wing injury. Only one of the babies survived. Tell me that picture doesn't make you say AAWWWW!!!!

We're getting improvements to our property all the time now. People who see it will be able to tell that it belongs to Bird TLC. We have our own sign.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Bad Fishing and other birds

Young guys seem to get in the most trouble, no matter what species they might be. Because of the population of eagles in Alaska, we get to see quite a few.

This guy was sent to us by Liz of U.S.F.& W. in the Kenai NWR. He some how got tangled in tossed fishing gear. What we figure is that he got this treble hook caught under his wing. He reached down with his beak to pull it off. In doing so he got the hook right through his tongue. He had to be down for a few days.

He's not feeling good now, but he has to be feeling a lot better than before. He gets to have Bird TLC hospitality until he gets back into shape.

The raven was sent to us from Nome. U.S.F. & W. shipped this raven down who wasn't flying on its own. He has some major leg and foot issues. Dr. Riddle has fixed him up with his version of Nike's for now. This is a young raven, probably this years bird. He's very talkative.

Meet Gus. He's an education bird that came to TLC in 1991 with a broken wing. They figure he was about 2 at the time. It was determined that he wasn't releasable. He has gone through 3 caretakers and several presenters during that time. Now it's my turn to try to present him. Gus and I are in training together with Lisa as my mentor. We'll keep you updated.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A normal day at the flight center

Britt and I went to the flight center on Friday to feed our feathered friends and to get Adolph, a bald eagle and bring him back to the clinic. He's being released on Saturday, yeah!

One of our electrocution birds that we call Gomes had a feather caught on his beak. In the photo at left he looks like he's balancing it on his beak. He can be a goof ball.

Enlarge the owl photo and look at its right eye. The spider isn't actually on his eye, but right in front of it.

The mature bald is Adolph. He has absolutely nothing wrong with him. He just likes to hold his right wing out when he's perched. He flies beautifully. We brought him back to the clinic a few months back and took x-rays, did a full exam to include blood and found no reason for him to be doing that. Since he flies well and is in good health, he gets released.

We had to do some repairs on the netting in one cell. We're taking a rough-legged hawk out next week to get some flight time and maybe start Mouse U in a couple weeks. In another cell a cable had got some slack in it and we needed to tighten that up. That place is getting old and needs some attention.

It was time to take out the trash and head out. As I got to the door I yelled for Britt to get her camera. Mom and young moose were moseying by. So the trash got to wait. One thing you don't do is get between mom and her baby.

Just another day.

Photo Credit: Britt Coon / Bird TLC

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bird TLC on KTVA 11 news

Anchorage Rehab Center Helps Injured Birds Return To The Wild
Lauren Maxwell CBS 11 News
Updated: 06/14/2009 12:31:44 PM AKDT

Did you know that Alaska is home to over half of the wild bird species that live in the entire U.S.? Or that wild birds from around the world migrate to our state every year? It's the reason that Anchorage has a premier treatment center that works to heal wild birds from all over the state.
Anchorage's Bird Treatment and Learning Center is that place. The center is known for working with raptors like eagles, hawks and owls. But it also takes in any bird that's injured, everything from exotic sea birds to tiny song birds.

Director Cindy Palmatier says bird injuries generally fall into three categories: toxins, trauma or starvation. Volunteers work to nurse all kinds of birds back to health at the clinic with the eventual goal of setting them free. But if their scars are more permanent they are trained to become education birds.

Bird T.L.C. presenters go to schools and public events across the state. They take the birds so that people can see them up close, learn about the species and the habitat it takes to support them.

"That they're beneficial and have a niche to fill and the more that we can expose people to that the better. If you can do that with live non-releasable

birds where people can make an emotional connection to a specific bird they may think twice before destroying habitat. People will respect what they understand." says Palmatier.
But while bird TLC would love to show more people the good work they do, they have a problem. The center has no place to bring the public. Bird TLC operates out of a donated warehouse in an industrial area of Anchorage. It's old and crowded and not at all the permanent home that Bird TLC is dreaming of.

That dream rests on a piece of property owned by Bird TLC over looking bird rich Potter's Marsh. It's where they are hoping to build a full fledged rehab and education center, open to the public in an area that is already a popular visitors site.

Palmatier says the eventual plan would be to link the boardwalk put up by Fish and Game at the marsh to the new Bird TLC building and have the two agencies work together on projects. Palmatier says the dream of a permanent facility is still millions of dollars away, money she knows will be tough to raise. But, she says, Bird TLC will keep working to make their vision come true.

If you'd like to learn more about Bird TLC and their programs we have posted a link to their website. You can find it under the links and information section on this page.

To contact the Newsroom, call 907-274-1111.

Click here for video.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Captain Hook is cool

Beauty is only skin deep. For some of us, Father Time hasn't been the kindest. Hook was found with a halibut hook in his mouth. Because of that he was left with a scar on the right side of his face that doesn't allow feathers to grow. His eye lid is a little out of shape and He had to have a wing tip removed due to an infection.

He's an older bird. Watching him you know he's been around. He knows how close to let you get or how close he can get to you. He's back at the flight center. One of 6 non-flighted birds awaiting placement at another facility somewhere. But he's the respected bird by the other birds. There are bigger, younger and more aggressive birds in his cell, but he's top bird.

As I've said before, he has birdality. He'll talk to you if you want to talk or not. He'll run up and get the first piece of fish during feeding time. He won't be aggressive towards other birds, but he will give them a piece of his mind.

Yesterday I went out to the flight center to feed and do some yard work. When I got there he was in the water dish taking a bath. I caught him off guard and he got out. I continued on cutting the grass, washing the eagle poo off the walls, raking and getting rid of all the stuff that winter hid from us.

My last chore was to scrub out the water dish, fill it back up and then feed them. I put the hose in the dish and went inside to get
food. I came out 5 minutes later and he was going to town taking another bath. Who could blame him, it was 79°. That's hot for us.

So today Britt and I went back out and put a wading pool in and filled it up. He didn't go near it. Probably because we were there, but we'll go back and check on him again real soon. While he was waiting for us top leave, he laid down and was using a perch to prop his head. His buddy Rollie had his back. He was watching over him.

I tell ya, this guy is cool!