Spring is in full swing now and wild babies are showing up in the world, getting found by kids, cats, dogs, and other suburban challenges!
Last week, a youg Black Phoebe, fresh from the nest, was found by students on the ground at East High, an alternative high school in Fortuna. Brought to our clinic, we quickly determined that the young bird was a fledgling, not injured. Although songbirds live among us, closer than almost any other wild animals, many people remain unaware that fledgling birds often spend up to a week not quite ready to fly, but more than ready to jump form the nest. This is a very vulnerable time for these little guys, but it’s a time that every adult bird you see has passed through. Of course our modern world, with housecats, dogs, and cars lurking behind every moment, presents some dangers that natural life on Earth doesn’t, but still the best place for a fledgling bird is with her or his parents.
After giving this Phoebe an exam and some food, we started to arrange for the best possible plan – reuniting the family.
Black Phoebe eating mealworms while in our care ……….. (video BAX/Lucinda Adamson)
Two days later, we took the little Phoebe back to Fortuna, back to the exact location where s/he was found. Adult Black Phoebes were flying all over the area. A hole in the wall of an outbuilding appeared to have a Phoebe nest. Our staff placed the young bird as close to the nest as possible, off the ground and hopefully out of danger.
Black Phoebe adults in flight – are these our guy’s parents? (BAX/Laura Corsiglia)
The young Phoebe sits waiting for parents. (BAX/Laura Corsiglia)
Soon the youngster made a short flight to the roof of the building. Almost immediately an adult approached. Success! Soon the fledgling’s parents were bringing food. We stayed to make sure that all was well and then left this wild family to their own world, right out in the open, in the middle of our world, yet so mysterious!
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All photos (BAX/Laura Corsiglia)