Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Recent Hospital Patients

Green Herons
(Osh, Kosh & BGosh)
Case #061410
Admitted 6/14

On June 12, when a tree fell on a house in Ballwin, the residents discovered that it contained a nest of Green Herons.  There were three babies in the nest.
 Osh, Kosh & B'gosh 
The concerned homeowner put them in a box in a nearby tree, in the hope that the parents would continue to feed them.  However, they saw the mother looking for them for two days, but she apparently was unable to find them, at which point the homeowner brought them in to the World Bird Sanctuary.

Our veterinarian determined that they appeared to be in good condition, although they were still very young, so our course of treatment consisted of supportive therapy in the hope that they would do well until old enough to be released.

They were fed minnows for about two weeks; then graduated to small trout.  They continued to do well and thrive on this diet.

They soon became staff favorites, and even though we don’t usually name our temporary charges—we couldn’t help ourselves.  They became known around the Sanctuary as Osh, Kosh and B’gosh.  One of the trio assumed the role of “protector”, and would hover over the other two whenever he perceived a threat, such as being weighed. 

Soon they were released into a rehab cage where they built up their muscles by making short flights.  Last Tuesday was “Graduation Day” for these three lucky little birds.  They were taken to a marshy area near the Meramec river by several staff members, where they flew out of their crate and back into their natural environment. 

Our hospital treats upwards of 300 birds in a year’s time. Stories such as this one are what keep our staff and volunteers motivated when we have an outcome that isn’t as successful.  Some, such as these three little guys, spend only a short time in our hospital and require only supportive care.  Others, with more serious injuries, may require surgery and months of intensive rehabilitation.  This is just an example of the many types of birds treated in our facility.  Because our space and resources are limited we do not treat Geese, Ducks or Songbirds. 

Submitted by Gay Schroer, World Bird Sanctuary volunteer

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