Semi-urgent - found baby bird

I just got home from work and Moon Unit excitedly showed me a baby bird that had somehow found its way to the garage. I have no clue what to do with the poor thing. The county’s animal control office doesn’t show anything on its website that seems to be a way to report this sort of thing. Nor does the local Humane Society. Argh!

My best guess right now is to use some paper or something to scoop it up and set it outdoors for its parents to “rescue” it… my assumption is that it’s not save-able at this point :frowning:

Any better suggestions???

Call your local vets and see if there is an avian vet or bird rescue who will take it.

Shoo it out and leave it alone. Either it’s mother or a neighborhood cat will help with nature taking its course. Unless it’s old enough to fend/fly for itself.

What a lovely sentiment. Is you real name Thomas Hobbes?

When some local kids brought around a baby bird (chances are they should have left it where it was and the mother would have found it. But they didn’t know any better and by that time it was too late…they didn’t even know where they found it) we found a bird resuce place…if it’s not on the web site, call the Humane Center directly (or the vet isn’t a bad idea). There are people who know what to do with them.

Best thing is getting it back to it’s mother but she has to be able to find it.

:smiley: Or a natural predator like a racoon, possum, skunk, fox, coyote? Any better?

Many cities have bird-rescue groups, or individuals with a special interest in birds. I hope you can locate someone who has some expertise. You may be tempted to take on the task, but raising a baby bird successfully is very difficult. Over the years, we’ve tried eight times, and only one of our babies survived, a little mockingbird that we named Atticus.

pinkfreud, it looks like Atticus survived by eating all the other baby birds. He’s a round little guy!

Mama Zappa, how well feathered is your found baby bird? In particular, are his primary flights developed? Does he try to fly, and how well, when you approach?

Often they go through a stage where they’re learning to fly, but not very capable yet, and you’ll find them on the ground looking lost or cranky. I think they come up to speed very fast though.

If nothing can get at him in the garage, and you’re not using it, I’d put a shallow plate of water (something he’s unlikely to drown in) and some seed (or in an emergency, bread crumbs) near him and leave him alone.

Caveat: I know that different kinds of birds eat different things, and he might not be a seed eater, but we’re talking emergency measures that might help. I don’t expect anyone to masticate some bugs and regurgitate for him.

I wouldn’t take him into custody unless he looks really too young/undeveloped to fly, or seems to be getting weaker.

Meanwhile, do try and talk to a wild animal rehabber; he or she will be much more knowledgeable than I am.


Any idea what kind of bird? When I found a beat up red tailed hawk, I called the University of Minnesota’s raptor center. An instructor drove out and got it.

We found a baby bird two days ago outside a Wendy’s restaurant after a storm. There were no trees around and the bird’s siblings were next to him, dead. The little guy kept moving and stretching his neck but couldn’t get himself upright. He was laying on the ground, in the rain, and I kept thinking (hopefully, actually) he would die. But he didn’t and my daughter was getting hysterical, so finally I went out with a napkin and rescued him.

He was very, very little. We ended up taking him to friends of ours, who are known in the community for taking in baby animals. It was a baby robin, less than 10 days old, not even a fledgling yet because it hadn’t opened its eyes yet. He didn’t have many feathers either and was quite the scrawny thing. I felt really bad because my friend reported that the bird has to be fed* every fifteen minutes during the day. He starts chirping at 6am. (Who knew Mama and Papa birds work so hard?) In any event, it’s the end of day 2 now and the bird is still alive, thanks to his caregivers.

*They feed him eggs (yeah, I know, sounds a little cannibalistic) and ground up worms, through a syringe. Luckily there are 3 kids who are willing caregivers. This is their 3rd orphan of the season and so far their success rate is 1 out of 2. They had 2 baby sparrows a few weeks ago, both older than the robin, and one made it to fly away and the other died.

Thanks all.

I wound up putting the bird out of the garage, under a shrub. A while later it had found its way to a neighbor’s yard. No clue about this morning. I’m assuming it will wind up being some cat’s dinner, unfortunately.

I had no luck finding anyone local who knew anything about birds. This one was fledge, looked to be about half the size of an adults sparrow. It was hopping about on its own (obviously, hence the movement to the neighbor’s yard) and cheeping nonstop for food/parents. I’m guessing it was a sparrow of some sort - we get a lot of those at the bird feeder in the back yard.

We just don’t have the resources (time, know-how) to try to rescue it ourselves. I won’t stress too much - we do have plenty of sparrows around here so it’s nothing endangered.

Surprisingly, Moon Unit wasn’t too freaked out at the thought of nature taking its course. And it turns out she had already moved it once - from one side of the garage to the other - so it’s quite possible even if the parents were nearby and able to help, they would have been unwilling to do so.

Well, a neighborhood cat isn’t nature taking it’s course. But that’s for another thread. A racoon, possum, skunk, fox, or coyote needs to eat too. I’d be fine with nature’s cycle working that way. I know it sounds cruel, but baby birds need to be fed pretty much every couple hours. And they need to be fed the right amount. Even then, they might die. A slow and painful death. So leave the baby birds be. Watch over them, and if a cat comes close, shoot it, so the coyote can eat twice. :smiley:

Baby birds always seem to find their way into my yard. I always put them in a small box and wedge the box into a crotch in a tree. This keeps them fairly safe from predators until mom or dad can locate them. 9 times out of 10 the parents have come for it by them end of the day.