Nursing a Baby Bird Back to Health
Make the Bird Safe
Gently place the injured bird in a cardboard box that has a towel or crumpled tissue at the bottom. Make sure there are air holes so the bird can breathe. If you can't get the bird to a veterinary medical professional right away, place the box in a safe area of your home. Keep it in a location where it won't be disturbed by young children or curious pets, like cats. Avoid trying to feed the bird or give him water, as this can complicate injuries and make things worse.
Monitor the Bird’s Status
Keep an eye on the bird to gauge his recovery, though try not to disturb him with repeated opening and closing of the box. Sometimes wild birds that look injured are simply stunned or scared, and will quickly rebound on their own once they've had a chance to rest and recoup. If it sounds like the bird is hopping about the box with no problem, return him to the area where you found him. If he is listless or unresponsive, seek immediate medical attention.
Call a Vet
If you have a vet for your own pets, call him and explain your situation. Your vet may be able to treat the bird, or he may refer you to another doctor who specializes in wild animal care. Be prepared to foot the bill for the injured bird’s medical treatment yourself. After initial care is delivered, it's not likely you'll be able to take the bird home with you, nor should you attempt to. The bird will be better off with a wildlife rehabber who can help the bird recover and reintroduce it into the wild.
Always use gloved hands or a soft towel to handle the bird. Birds can carry disease that could be passed on to you or to other animals in your household. While it may be tempting to try and fully nurse the bird back to health and keep it as a pet, recognize that most wild birds do not do well in captivity. Many birds are even illegal to keep without a permit, such as some protected species of hawks and falcons.
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How do you nurse a baby bird back to health?
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