Ruddy Duck

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Chicken in Fort Greene Park – 12/9/2010

Sunday night I got a call from a neighbor who found a chicken wandering around the park. They had called 911 to report it who told them to call 311 which then laughed and said there was no way they were coming out unless the animal was a deer or raccoon or had rabies. So I ended up in a chicken hunt. We were looking under cars, in peoples yards, bushes and as you can imagine we got some strange looks. Thankfully no one called the police.

Found the chicken in the bushes by the side entrance to the park and I managed to pick her up without any problem. Carried her home and once she was inside she took one took around the apartment and decided “to will do”.

The neighbor who called me brought up her dog crate for the bird but the little gal decided my lap was much better. Warm and cozy she fell asleep on my lap, head resting on my arm as I caught up on email and billing. Very sweet. She would periodically make happy coos.

Luckily Monday mornings are when I volunteer at the Wild Bird Fun at Animal General and one of the vets at AG loves chickens and adopted a few from WBF. She was very happy to have another chicken, and when she examined the little guy she discover the baby chicken is actually a baby rooster. He was *just* starting to mature. Apparently you can’t tell the difference of males and females till the mature and this little guy just started showing his soon-to-be rooster glory. It was hard to see, but once the vet showed me what to look for, there was no doubt.

The vet will keep the rooster till he fully matures (about 2 months) and he will then go to a sanctuary-farm upstate that takes WBFs domesticated animals to live happy and healthy lives.

And yes. WBF will get plenty of chickens and roosters. People in the city, especially immigrants, like to keep them in gardens, roofs and even on fire escapes. Once people discover their little chicken is actually a rooster who lays no eggs, crows and can be aggressive, they leave domesticated birds in the park to fed for themselves. We think that’s what happened to this little guy.


Update (jan 23, 2011), Chicken is doing well and is living a happy life at an educational farm upstate :)

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Seagull – 9/6/2010

I had the pleasure of working with this “little” guy during my shift at the Wild Bird Fund. He came to us with a broken wing. Despite their reputation for being nasty, this guy was pretty nice and I believe he understood we were helping him and giving him free fish and frozen mice (yum?)

You can see his broken wing in the pictures. He still looked forward to his daily swims and was happy to be floating, even if it wasn’t perfect.

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White Meat and Dark Meat

Again I told myself I would not have any more birds till we got rid of the damn cat.

Well White Meat (the banded gray pigeon) was sitting on a school fence, looking pretty sick. With a dog in hand, I was able to walk right over to him, pick him up and feel his crop. Poor little guy must have gotten seperated from his parents and was dehydrated and hungry. I put him back on the fence and took him home after my dog walk was done.

Luckily Mal was not too interested in the pigeon and I was able to nurse him back to health.

2 weeks later, he was given a clean bill of health and a younger brother by the WBF. So now we have 2 pigeons. They have doubled in size and as a result have outgrown the pet carrier they are kept in.

(PS Pigeons are messy)

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More Starlings

Some photos of  Tall Bird, Fat Bird and Small Bird.

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Tall Bird, Fat Bird and Small Bird

Some photos of  Tall Bird, Fat Bird and Small Bird.

Fat Bird and Small Bird came to us by the WBF. Right now 2 baby Starlings is a lot, especially when I have a full dog walking schedule. In order to take care of my dogs AND the baby birds, I will wear a hooded sweatshirt backwards and keep with babies with me during my route. It works out perfectly. The dogs get a 30 min walk, which is the same amount of time in between bird feedings. So I look like an idiot walking between dogs shoving into a noisy hood. Most NYers don’t notice or if they do it’s not something I get stopped to explain. And i’m so thankful for that.

Anyway. Tall Bird (aka Duck)came to me by a fellow dog walker who found the poor little guy on the verge of death. She picked him up and gave me a call. Can’t say no to the little guy so my self made promise to only take 2 birds has been changed in a matter of hours.

All 3 birds grew up fast and healthy. Tall Bird is the fastest learner I ever saw. It was like he was born knowing how to fly. One day he decided he was going to fly across the room and he did. No previous attempts needed. He became an acrobatic pest quickly. He pushed our adult Starlings out of the bath and jumped in front of the line during feedings. Tall Bird was one of my favorites. He went from a 50/50 chance to make it through the night to being one of the healthiest Starlings I raised. What a great feeling. It was only better when I told his original rescuer how well he did.

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Henry and Pam

Here are some pictures of Henry and Pam in the first weeks we had them. They are now adult-looking squirrels and have the nails to prove it.

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Baby Squirrel – really baby

I was going through pictures the other day and found this picture a friend took of the baby Squirrel when we first brought her home. I can’t believe how small and cute she was. They grow up so fast!

Baby-baby squirrel

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Thor and Loki in their new home and family

The idea was to take the 2 lab pups over night and bring them to a shelter in the morning when places were open. (Hm. Yeah. That over night thing is never “just overnight”?) It turned into permanent residence within hours of bathing and feeding the pups that night. Cat called her boyfriend (living with his family in Jersey) and they adopted the dogs immediately.

Unfortinuatly my friends just moved back from Belgium and had no apartment. They loved the dogs so much and they were able to pile in with friends and family till they found a lovely place in Park Slope-Windsor Terrace.

The poor guys have gone through so much that they need LOTS of attention and training but luckily Cat has rolled up her sleeves and is reading everything about dog training. This is her first dog(s) and it’s very amusing to watch her go from squeamish about poop duty to praising when they do poop. Luckily she learned a lot staying at our place and still calls when ever she needs advice. But man. Those two are a full time job. Hats off to her!

Radar, Thor and Loki have puppy play dates and it’s been great to watch the Thor and Loki be dogs.

It’s hard to photographic the pups playing, so most of the pictures of them sleeping. Don’t let these fool you – they are very hyper.

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