Finding a baby bird advice and plan of action

What Should You Do if You Find a Baby Bird?

November 9, 2007 by  
Filed under Features

What should you do if you find a baby bird? There are times that baby birds either fall out of their nests or their nests are destroyed. People often feel sorry for these babies and take them home to care for them, but there are a few dangers involved for the bird that the public should be aware of.

It is important to determine what bird species the baby bird is to be able to take the correct action in the situation. However, it is advised that baby birds that are rescued by the public should rather be taken to their nearest veterinary establishment or wildlife rescue center, so that they are able to receive the necessary care.

When a baby bird is found on the ground, one should not immediately assume that it is in danger, or that it has been deserted by its parents. Some bird species leave the nest quite early and spend a few flightless days on the ground. They are watched over by their parents, who keep them safe from danger, and will learn how to fly during this time. If someone had to pick these birds up and take them home, they would be interrupting a very important stage of the bird’s life when the parents teach them how to fly, how to find food and what should be considered a threat. Other bird species, such as Mallards and the Killdeer, are able to feed themselves almost immediately after they have hatched, and can often be seen walking around looking for food. American Robins don’t leave the nest for a couple of weeks, but it is not unheard of to find them taking a walk before they are able to fly. In all these instances, the parents will be nearby keeping an eye on their chicks.

Birds are not like mammals, they do not have an acute sense of smell, and will not abandon their babies because a human has handled the baby. If it is impossible to return the nestling to its original nest, an artificial nest can be erected close to the original nest and the nestling left inside. The parents will take a few hours before approaching the nest, as the disturbance might make them nervous. Fledglings might also end up on the ground due to a failed attempt to fly, and can be recognized by full-grown feathers sticking out between the fluffy baby feathers. If making a homemade nest does not lure the parents back to the nest, it is best to keep the baby bird in a small soft box, in a quiet area, away from the bustling household. Keeping the bird warm is essential. Do not try to feed the baby water or any type of food. The incorrect food or even water can kill them if they choke or if the diet is wrong. Rather take the bird to professionals who have the knowledge and capabilities to care for them.

Unfortunately, nature can be cruel and siblings can also kick the weaker competition out the nest. So next time you ask the question: What should you do if you find a baby bird? Remember that it is important to first evaluate the situation before taking action. Sitting and keeping an eye on the bird for a while, to ensure that it is not injured or merely taking its first steps towards adult life, will protect against the life cycle of the bird being interrupted. Even though kind humans are trying to assist nature, they could be doing harm and need to make sure that their good intentions don’t lead to a bad outcome.

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