Two New Wedgie Stories

Another young wedgie has arrived.

Special thanks to Charlie and his family for giving up their long weekend Monday morning to come in and open the clinic to help her.

Only just fledged, she was found on a rocky outcrop on a very large property, severely emaciated and dehydrated. The outcrop contains a substantial rabbit population and being unable to fly she had obviously made her way there to try and get a feed.

The awesome raptor convoy team from WRSC Inc swung into action under the direction of the convoy organising queen, Jenny Packwood, and she arrived here safely.

Charlie prepares to examine the young bird

Charlie prepares to examine the young bird

Intensive care was initiated and within a couple of days she was standing, bright and alert. Self feeding by now she moved onto clean chicken meat soaked in egg yolk and another couple of days of building up strength and she was deemed ready for a quick light anesthetic.

Charlie & Bill perform x-ray examination

Charlie & Bill perform x-ray examination

These are a couple of pics of vet Charlie Carter checking on her as she was waking. Full body x rays and blood samples were taken, as well as faecal analysis.

note the shiny new beak and yellow cere, indicative of a fledgling

note the shiny new beak and yellow cere, indicative of a fledgling

She appears to be another young wedgie with the feather dysplasia issues we are encountering in them, but aside from her emaciation, initial examination has revealed no further clues or problems.

We will monitor her and await results before determining how best we can try and work out what is going on with these birds.

On a sadder note a second one could not be saved, and all Charlie and Bill could do was humanely euthanase him and end what must have been considerable suffering.

He had been shot – the bullet passing through his wing and leaving a non union fracture and bone obliteration in its wake. Metal fragments were still evident in his subcut abdomen.

We are once again very grateful to his carer for sending him on.

X-ray of damaged wing

X-ray of damaged wing

So sad – Peggy

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Social interaction in the free flight aviary

While down completing the daily feeding and cleaning, in the mist, rain and cold, Mike and I were lucky enough to witness the extreme of interactions noted so far in the aviary. The Wedge-tailed Eagle and Brown Goshawk were sharing a perch and in sailed this recently fledged Black Shouldered Kite. Thinking he would perch in between them, as has been seen before, he surprised us by calmly landing in perfectly on the wedgies back, where he stayed for at least half an hour. The wedgie showed no sign at all of intolerance, except towards me when I moved a little closer to get the video you can see here too. The rain poured down as you can hear in the video, my camera got wet, we got soaked but what an experience!

So much to learn, and that we don’t understand.

The Black Shouldered Kite is yet to reach dispersal age, and as always Drs Debus and Olsen have been really helpful with that info.

To be continued………..Peg

Amazing tolerance & interaction - three's a crowd!

Amazing tolerance & interaction – three’s a crowd!

 

Amazing tolerance & interaction

No signs of distress or hostility

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Bumper Bump-In at NPWS Fitzroy Falls

Well yesterday was a huge day. We setup the ARCC Inc display at NSW NPWS Fitzroy Falls Visitors Centre. It looks great and has a huge range of hand-crafted items for sale. Items start at $3.50 for yummy gingerbread owls up to $350 for the limited edition Raptor Prints.

The NPWS media release was published early this week and judging by the amount of phone calls to the visitors centre there certainly seems like a lot of interest from the general public as well as local media. Hopefully with Fathers Day, Tulip Time & school holidays the display will attract a lot of visitors to help get the community aware of ARCC Inc, and also assist in fundraising efforts for the satellite tracking program.

Thanks to those who were able lend a hand arranging the mass of goods into a spectacular display, and also those who toiled for many hours making goods specifically for ARCC Inc.

Here are a few images from display setup. If you are in the Southern Highlands please call into the Visitors Centre & feel free to forward this post to anyone you think maybe interested.

Selection of items available for sale

A tired but happy ARCC Inc team after setting up display

Selection of items available for sale

Selection of items available for sale

ARCC Inc is getting great publicity & support from NPWS

ARCC Inc is getting great publicity & support from NPWS

Peg is very happy to unfurl the new ARCC Inc banner

Peg is very happy to unfurl the new ARCC Inc banner

Selection of items available for sale

Selection of items available for sale

Selection of items available for sale

Selection of items available for sale

Selection of items available for sale

Selection of items available for sale

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Article from Southern Highland News – Image courtesy Jen Walker (Fairfax Media)

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Fundraising & Awareness Display at NPWS Fitzroy Visitors Centre

ARCC Inc are having a display at the NPWS Fitzroy Falls Visitors Centre in September.

We hope to raise awareness about ARCC Inc and also sell some merchandise to raise funds for our satellite tracking project. Various items will be available for purchase including bookmarks, greeting cards, pottery items, patchwork & other craft items & also limited edition fine art prints.

NPWS have just published the event on their website click here

We would like to thank the NPWS  Fitzroy Falls Visitors Centre as this event would not be possible without the generous support.

Please share this to your friends & help us get the word out!

or email info@australianraptorcareandconservation.com for more details.

Powerful Owl

Powerful Owl photo that appears on the NPWS website event page

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Wedge-tailed Eagles Getting Along Together

There are 5 Wedge-tailed eagles in the large flight at present. These birds all have varying degrees of feather damage from marked to extremely severe.

All also had other problems, but have now had a thorough veterinary examination by Dr Charlie Carter including, x rays, blood sampling, bacterial and fungal cultures from their feather shafts, retina checks and faecal analysis. Specialist diagnostic assistance has been sought with the results obtained, and treatments are now finished leaving the birds to rest quietly in the large flight.

Their change in attitude and demeanor is really remarkable, and the way they interact, chat, allo preen, roost together and appear to play is heart warming. They do genuinely seem to enjoy each other’s company and have all really sparked up since being introduced to each other.

Their individual colourings are beautiful.

Once again special thanks and gratitude to the organisations who have sent them here, trusting us with their care and giving them the combined best chance we can for them to soar free again.”

These wedge-tailed eagles are definitely getting along together

These wedge-tailed eagles are definitely getting along together

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wedge-tailed eagle

Wedge-tailed Eagle

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Southern Boobook to be Relocated

This Southern Boobook was roosting in a food handling factory in the Illawarra, and his continual presence was not welcome. Having been removed once he quickly re established himself, and the predictions regarding his longer time life span should his habit continue were not great! He was caught up again and moved here for a thorough vet check ( which gave the all clear) and some thoughts on how we should handle the situation.

Consultation with both Steve Debus and Jerry Olsen, who were sent some of Mark’s images and the owl’s story gave us the following information:

“The two generations of tail feathers (old central feathers, others new) means that it’s not a first-year bird, i.e. must be at least second-year or older. This would mean an experienced bird, so I’d see no problem releasing it anytime anywhere far from the problem area (even 100 km, as Jerry said). As it’s likely that some Boobooks move during autumn-winter, it probably doesn’t matter that it’s not released near where it came from. It doesn’t look like a Tasmanian bird, i.e. it’s a mainland one, but who knows where its breeding territory might be, potentially many tens of km from where it was caught. If you want to give it a bit of help over the winter, it wouldn’t hurt to keep it another month or so”

Armed with that invaluable information he will be soft released from here when spring arrives.

Southern Boobook's age estimated by examination of tail feathers

Southern Boobook’s age estimated by examination of tail feathers

This Southern Boobook will be soft-released in spring

This Southern Boobook will be soft-released in spring

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Eva – The Wedge-tailed Eagle

These are links to articles recently published regarding an dumped Wedge-tailed eagle with all her talons deliberately cut off.

ABC New England Northwest website

NSW Government Office of Environment & Heritage website

The University of Queensland – UQ News website

 

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Ruling The Roost – a Valuable Lesson

A hungry and inexperienced juvenile Wedge-tailed Eagle found himself in trouble after entering a chicken coop and then becoming trapped. He must have panicked at not being able to escape and while his back was turned he was attacked by the (rather brave) rooster. The eagle suffered a deep puncture wound to his back, right next to the spine. The wound was about 5cm deep and filled with dirt and feathers.

He was rushed to the Casino Vet Clinic who gave an anesthetic and cleaned and flushed the wound. There where fortunately no other significant injuries, and although very sore and suffering nerve damage to the left leg and missing five tail feathers, he is on the way to recovery.

The puncture wound inflicted by the rooster

The puncture wound inflicted by the rooster

Hopefully this young eagle will keep out of harms way

Hopefully this young eagle will keep out of harms way

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Southern Boobook

This juvenile Southern Boobook was found weak and exhausted with a nasty wound to its back and all its tail feathers pulled out. This injury is typical of that caused by a predator, sadly in this instance most likely a dog or cat.

After initial re-hydration then a course of anti-biotics and twice daily applications of Flamazine ointment, the wound is gradually healing.

The little owl is starting to feel better and is now self feeding. He will have remain in care until the tail feathers regrow.

July-Boobook-combo-800px

 

 

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Congratulations Dr Stephen Debus – Winner of the 2015 DL Serventy Medal

A belated, but sincere and well deserved congratulations to supporter and helper Dr Stephen Debus, who is the 2015 winner of the D.L. Serventy Medal, in recognition of his outstanding work on bird ecology in Australia.

The Serventy Medal has been awarded for the past 20 years and is the highest award for professional ornithologists in Australasia. Past winners include Hugh Ford, Harry Recher, David Lindenmayer, Penny Olsen and Richard Kingsford.

This award recognises Steve’s huge contribution to woodland bird and raptor research, and his guiding role in editing journals, most notably, Australian Field Ornithologist and its predecessor, Australian Bird Watcher. Steve currently has more than 100 published research papers, has written or edited 7 books on raptors, 2 chapters for the Handbook of Australian, Antarctic, and New Zealand Birds (HANZAAB), and 2 chapters for the Handbook of the Birds of the World.

We are lucky indeed to have him helping us.

Well done Steve!

Peggy

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