Saturday, June 30, 2012

Black & white

SPARKLE came to this facility yesterday after being found almost two weeks ago when the rest of the baby magpies were killed. Luckily some very caring people found this survivor. They did a good job of keeping the young bird alive but remember, it is against the law for anyone to take in and keep a protected bird. Black-billed magpies are such a bird.

Right now this beautiful little fellow is learning how to eat food on his own as he's been hand fed by his rescuers. He should be ready to join all the local magpies in a couple weeks.

Beautiful view

Because of the wildfires near this area the sunsets are awesome. This is the view from my yard facing North. Aren't I just the luckiest person to live in such beauty?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

What is going on????

Most raptors, in this part of the country, are hatched from March through April so the young are old enough and have the time to learn the skills needed so they have a chance of reaching maturity.

Not so with these two babies. I believe HOOTER, the baby GHO is about 8-9 weeks old. I don't even know what species of falcon the other baby is, perhaps a merlin. I think COTTON is only about 1-2 days old. And you can see his size relative to a regular chicken egg.

The owl was found under the nest tree and because he's very thin I made the decision to bring him back to IBR for some groceries and then return him to his parents and the other two siblings.

The baby falcon was found under the nest, along with three dead siblings, and no parents were seen. The owl has a super chance of being returned to the wild in a short amount of time. The falcon, iffy. I'll let you know when I make a positive ID on this very tiny bird.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

An answer

Today I may have found out why SEEDY died. As I mentioned in his eulogy, he may have challenged the GHO I'd recently put in their flight area. He's been in there for almost two decades and has had many, many other owls sharing his space, this time it was different and resulted in his death. Today I found an egg hidden in a corner, an owl egg. That means I had the sex wrong on one of them, SEEDY or SMIDGE is a female.

They've been together for six years but apparently it's been a long courtship and it ended with SEEDY trying to be dominant with the newcomer. As I still have his body I can have an autopsy done to determine the sex but that won't bring him back so I'll just go on as is.

Hard landing

Most baby birds take to flying quite well but the landings are something else. This is PIP, probably around 12 weeks old who found himself in a rather precarious position yesterday. He was caught up in a barbwire fence which can be devastating. Naturally he fought to get free and he did but he took some hardware with him.

Caught up in the feathers on the leading edge of his left wing was a barb from the fence. How it came undone is beyond me but both points and the twisted wire in between were stuck near his elbow. The bad news is that the remaining barbs in the fence cut his wing up pretty bad. Luckily there are no broken bones but it will take some time to see if there is muscle and tendon damage.

He's a fiesty little bird so attitude make carry the day.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Short stay

Just last Saturday I received a beautiful adult male kestrel after he was rescued from the middle of the highway near the Chief Joseph turnoff on the Belfry Hiway. He had apparently been hit by a car while dining as a mouse body was near him. Thanks to a very caring person he was picked up and I was called.

CHIEF suffered no serious injuries which is amazaing as he only weighs a bit under 3.5 ounces, compared to the many thousand pounds of a vehicle. I believe he had a bit of a sore wing and probably a headache but is doing so well and flying so strong that he will be released this weekend near where he was found so he can rejoin his mate.

As you can see in this photo, his coloration is a very vivid orange, the look an adult male kestrel takes on during breeding season. That is over, the baby falcons have probably already fledged, but it takes a while for it to fade.

NOTE: He blasted out of the crate and instead of heading for the nearby trees he went up and let me see just how strong he is. He flew and soared in circles above me for a few minutes then as if deciding I'd seen enough, headed west over the hill.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Another good release

Today I set CARNEY loose to begin the rest of her life. This beautiful adult female Sharp-Shinned Hawk came up from Lander after apparently hitting a window in the town. She had a broken left wing but it was in good position so no surgery was needed.

These photos show her sitting on the highest perch in her flight area and right after release on the roof of my north room addition. I blinked my eye and missed her next takeoff so don't know which direction she headed. Hopefully it was towards a long and fruitful life.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


These two little cuties are the remaining babies in a nest of four robins found without a parent. Unfortunately the other two didn't make it but so far these are okay. They are almost old enough to fly and will go outside soon to practice that and finding bugs. I have an adult female in the yard that may (hopefully) help in that education.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Field of Honor

All this week, in the town of Cody, there is an amazing display involving 800 American flags. It's called the Field of Honor and celebrates Flag Day on June 14th. So far this is the only one of its kind in the state and I certainly encourage all to go see it. The Field of Honor obervances began in Sandy City, UT in 2002 on the first anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

The idea has now been celebrated across the country and includes honor or rememberance for active duty or veteran military personnel, first responders or any other loved ones.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


I have no idea what kind of moth/butterfly this is but it fell near my feet as I was moving my hose. I think it's a moth. So pretty and with such vivid markings. Anyone know the species let me know.

NOTE: I found out what it is, it's a member of the giant silk moth family. It's called a Polyphemus Moth and apparently mine is a female. The information said they only live a short time as an adult, probably near the end of her life when I found her. I'll check my aspen tree to see if there are a lot of little yellow caterpillars roaming around on it. Maybe they'll eat oyster shell scales, that would be super.