07192016 Red Tailed Hawk

Location of Rescue: 
Airport Expressway
Admission Date: 
Cause of Admission: 
probably struck by car
Juvenile RTH found out by Airport Expressway & Bluffton Road back on 7.19.16.   Was found on the side of the road dazed, and our guess is he was struck or rolled by a car possibly trying to eat a meal he might have spotted.   ( #1 reason our birds come in)  Taken back to the pens for assessment by our vet, there were no broken bones, no obvious injuries, no open wounds, but he refused to eat initially.  Because he/she was a juvenile and with no apparent injuries, we refer to them as "young & dumb" ..... juveniles who might have been separated from the parents too soon and weren't taught how to hunt successfully and then get injured..
Gigi can then go on to explain that by law we are only allowed to keep a rehab bird for 6 months.  At that point, a bird either needs to be released, if able, transferred out or unfortunately euthanized if there is no evidence the bird will improve enough to be released back into the wild.  This bird didn't need euthanasia, just time and TLC and at this point we reach out to the state asking for an extension on his time in our rehab facility.  However, even with repetitive creance flying (therapy) the bird still did not fly well or strong enough for us to release.  We moved the bird to another rehabber who has a much larger flight pen that would allow the bird to exercise his wings 24/7 and build up strength....after 2 weeks we brought him back to our own pens and started creancing for longer flights and it was obvious he had improved.  During his recovery time with us, he was served his food every day, he didn't have to go out and find it.  One other rehab tool we use especially for the young and orphaned raptors prior to their release is make sure they can catch/hunt live food.....(and then explain about the tubs and live mice)....after 3 consecutive days of catching live food, we are confident that this bird will survive on his own. 
 This is what SHRR is all about....the rescue, the rehabilitation and eventual release of our birds of prey....some birds can be released within that 6 month time frame we are given, some can take a year, but if a bird shows progress, we give it our all.  

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