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  • Writer's picturePeg McDonald

Summer dangers

I just walked outside to check on all the birds in care, feed all the chicks and make sure everyone has cool, clean water.

Something was strange and I couldn’t quite pick it. I sat down in the bush on a log and pondered and looked about.

Then I got it - absolutely no wind, not a whisper of wind about and so, so quiet. I honestly can not remember how many weeks it is since I felt that stillness.

The fires continue to rampage on and so many people have said to me, meaning to convey kindness, “well at least birds can fly away”. 🤔

There are so many chicks in nests at the moment, many birds including raptors are territorial, they are losing food sources, their home grounds and those valuable nesting hollows. What do birds like Gang-gang cockatoos do when they are forced out of their unique, small areas?

This little Brown Falcon chick for me has become my “face of the fires”, and reminds me that for me, here now, it is still one step at a time, one bird at a time, one feed at a time and that is where my focus, energy and hope must be.

He has survived being in a felled tree, losing his parents, being injured and adapting to life as a bird in rehab. He will need to be xrayed to ensure there is not a little fracture under the wound.

We have months to go on our journey together, then he faces life in the wild and most importantly that first couple of years as a juvie out there.

All that said though this is what we do as carers, he of course has a great spirit and tenacity and is only focused on his next meal!

He is currently in a crate to keep the flies away from the wound ( where have they all come from?) and has adapted very quickly to self feeding on chopped mice and quail. His droppings indicated liver trauma originally so he started on clean chicken and Spark..... but all good now. I hope he will move into his new “nest” in an aviary he can branch and fledge into soon.

Such gratitude to the firie who took the trouble to take him from the fireground near Braidwood to a lovely vet in Goulburn. Gratitude also to wonderful CSU student on placement and awesome friend Zoe, who drove all the way to Goulburn and back to pick this little dude and a kestrel chick up. Ace falcon nest maker too!! Zoe I am so grateful to have had you here this last week.

So as usual onwards and upwards.... Keep the faith everyone and love and hugs to my fellow overworked carers!!!

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