Monday, July 27, 2009

A Tough Weekend For Birds

Originally uploaded by Minnesota Daybreak

It was an unfortunate weekend for birds around here. On Friday morning as I sat in the sun room I noticed a dead bird laying on the walk. When I finally went out with a ziplock bag to pick up that bird (a fledgling blue jay), I continued to hear a bird cry that I'd been hearing all morning and realized that it was quite near. I looked around and there in the landscape rocks behind me was a baby blue jay (fluffy, wobbly, and very weak) less than half the size of the fledgling that I had just picked up. I quickly got an eye-dropper and water to try to re-hydrated the little one. Soon, with the help of C.C., (and having done some research on the internet) I made him a nest out of a cottage cheese container and started feeding him canned cat food. We attached the "nest" to a nearby tree where we'd seen several blue jays, but after looking him over they ignored the poor little guy. All this started before noon. I made many calls trying to find help for him, but nobody was interested in a baby blue jay. Fortunately, a lake neighbor (from the Florida Keys) with good experience in rescuing birds was interested and volunteered to try to keep him going and growing. She was an answer to prayer. Last report he was doing great. That same afternoon we noticed a loon not too far out from the docks and acting strangely. I took several photos of it and the following day, when we noticed him out there again, my son took more photos capturing some of it's odd behavior. He seemed to have an injured leg or perhaps have fishing line or something tangled around his back end. He looked more distressed the second day and didn't seem to be able to dive. I made a series of phone calls and finally got a wildlife officer. He came out, but by the time he arrived over an hour had passed and after much searching we couldn't find the loon that evening.

Sadly, I have just learned that the baby blue jay died sometime last night.