Summer 2006 - Daisy Duck the Second
A somewhat frustrated voice is coming from the other end of the telephone. A duck with a dragging wing has been spotted at a pond on a property outside Bradford. Hard to approach and skittish this duck is not letting anyone near. However, with dogs and other predators close by it is only a matter of time. Apparently this has been going on for at least 1-2 weeks, but no one will come to help.
OERS agrees to respond and not only does this caring individual verify that indeed the duck is there but with her groundskeeper manages to corral the duck into a transport cage ready and waiting for us when we arrive. Our first response with the new OERS Rescue Vehicle. A quick on site exam confirms the broken wing in our newest patient.
Upon arrival, a full veterinary exam reveals that aside from the right wing break, Daisy Duck the 2nd is healthy. So after preliminary care and wing immobilization Daisy is set-up in a comfortable cage to begin her recuperation. Within a week, Daisy 2nd is strong, and can actually retract her wing to her body again. A floating pool prevents foot and keel injury and provides cooling during the heat of the summer.
Moving to our exercise pen with a wading pool as her recovery progressed allowed her full rehabilitation and release back to the wild within one month of her arrival. Happy quacking Daisy 2nd.
May 2004 - Daisy Duck and her family rescue
Seems like some moms have figured out that a highway media in downtown is predator free and a great place to have a family
In May 2004, OERS Rescue received a call about a female duck who had made a nest in the middle of a very busy city street in Barrie. A nest had been created and the female had laid and was guarding her eggs, unfortunately in such close proximity to traffic it was only a matter of time before she was either killer or injured. Though risky, it was decided to intervene due to the proximity to traffic, the public and businesses in the area. OERS volunteers went to the scene.
Pictures documented the environment and then with patience the mother duck was captured the nest carefully gathered up. All were relocated safely to the waterfront park near the berm built by the city for waterfowl. Mother was left washing herself in the lake and upon 2 further visits to Collier street the mother did not re-appear.
Summer 2008 - Captain Crunch
The call for help came over the OERS 24/7 emergency number from a family vacationing in Tiny Township area in mid-august 2008. Their son had seen an injured seagull on a beach while kayaking. He and his friend pulled up on shore and noted that while all the other gulls flew away, this on seemed unable to get lift and one wing was dragging. The teenagers smartly corralled the bird into the edge of the water and then using a towel scooped it up and brought it home. Then after setting the bird up in a makeshift pen with bedding and water, they began calling around trying to find help. Finally through the internet they called OERS Rescue. As no one offered any help to them, OERS volunteers headed out to pick up our newest patient.
On scene it was clear that the boys had done a great job, even providing live minnows for the bird to snack on in addition to other staples. The bird, named Captain Crunch by the family, was carefully bundled into a transport cage and brought to the OERS facility. There, a full veterinary exam determined that Captain Crunch had an intact left wing but some nerve and probably tendon injury. The wing was immobilized for rest and Captain Crunch was given comfortable accommodations in the isolation area for the first week to ensure no transfer of latent infections, though the vet seemed sure Captain Crunch was fine. After one week the bandage was removed and the bird began to fully stretch the wing and flap. That was great news and after another vet check, all looks positive for a fast and complete recovery. Stay tuned for more news.
Captain Crunch’s wing was fully healed and strong as could be seen when constant flying was seen by all with the rehab flock. So, with remarkably summer-like warm weather and no storms in the forecast for at least 1-2 weeks it was decided this would be the opportune time for Captain Crunch to get back to the wild. After a final veterinary check and getting a clean bill of health, Captain Crunch was released following MNR rules and regulations. The release went very well, with Captain Crunch first doing a low flight and then taking to the skies showing stronger and stronger flight until full gliding and flight was seen as Captain Crunch flew off into the skies. All who attended the release were sad to see Captain Crunch go but glad to see the healed bird have a new chance for life in the great outdoors.
Summer 2008 - Jewel
OERS received a call from a lady in Toronto who found a seagull with a broken wing in an alleyway. She had tried calling other places, most told her the bird would be put down. She wondered whether she should try to capture the bird. The OERS volunteer manning the emergency line gave her appropriate instructions on how to safely capture the injured seagull and after the bird was caught they dropped it off with OERS at a mutually agreed to location.
Upon arrival to the facility, the OERS veterinarian conducted an initial examination. Findings included a severe and open fracture of the right wing. Otherwise the bird, that the folks who found named Jewel, was in apparent good health. Treatments were initiated to immediately reduce and immobilize the fractured wing and administer antibiotics to curb any infection. As the vet wanted to restrict jewel’s activity for at least the first week, comfortable but appropriate housing was provided. Jewel was offered a wide selection of food but soon showed the caregivers that it was cooked chicken, cheese and salmon, in that order that was suitable for the pallet! It took Jewel a few days to get used to the bandages and restricted movement that accompanies this, but soon jewel was scooting around the pen and during cleaning took every opportunity to try to slip out into the other areas of the OERS rehabilitation facility! Updates will be made available as appropriate.
June 2008 Update
After one week, the OERS veterinarian removed the bandaging one the good side so Jewel could once again stretch out the unaffected wing. Needless to say, Jewel was in full agreement that this was great. Also the living area was extended to allow Jewel more exercise. Yup that also received full Jewel approval. So far all is going according to plan and Jewel is eating and behaving as one hopes for a seagull! After 2 weeks, the bandage on the broken wing was removed and the OERS vet proclaimed that the wing was healing beautifully. Immediately after careful bandage removal and clipping of the flight feathers to remove excess strain on the newly healed wing, Jewel began to stretch the affected wing.
The OERS veterinarian allowed jewel to go into our large full size housing with a shallow bath. Well, within 2 minutes, Jewel got into the shallow bowl, squatted down and proceeded to have a full bath. My oh my - the water was flying everywhere! The vet is extremely pleased and feels barring any other complications, Jewel will fly again! Within a few days sure enough, Jewel is already getting lift and the wing is fully spread. As a matter of fact everyone is having trouble identifying which wing was indeed broken. Jewel has now been integrated into our rehabilitation flock and is making friends. This also affords Jewel much more space to exercise and work the wings.
September 2008 Update
With the wing fully healed and controlled flight in evidence with the rehab flock it was clear that Jewel needed to get back to the wild! With remarkably summer-like warm weather and no storms in the forecast for at least 1-2 weeks it was decided this would be the opportune time for Jewel’s release. After a final veterinary check and getting a clean bill of health, Jewel was released following MNR rules and regulations. The release went very well, with Jewel taking to the skies immediately, showing strong flight and gliding. Everyone was sad as they had grown fond of Jewel yet glad to see Jewel fly off the continue life in the great outdoors.
Fall 2007 - Dumper the Sea Gull
It was 830 at night when the emergency cell call came in. A caring man had what appeared to be a seagull with an injured wing walk right up to him at his friend’s garage in an industrial complex in Toronto. Well that is indeed a first! Who says they aren’t resourceful. Apparently the gull was unable to use its wing and wanted help.
The caller wanted to know what to do. OERS staff advised him on how to safely temporarily house him until pickup, which was arranged for the next morning. OERS Rescue picked up our latest victim who had spent a comfortable night indoors sheltered and safe. Once at the OERS facility, a full veterinary exam occurred for ‘Dumper’, as the individual aptly named the gull following his overnight experience with the lil guy!! Dumper was lucky as the left wing appeared to only have suffered some blunt trauma with no serious fracture evident.
Aside from that the young adolescent appeared healthy. After immobilizing the injured wing, Dumper was moved into an isolation pen just as a precaution. Dumper’s appetite is great and no wonder, dining on fish and other delights as the wing rests. So far all is going well. Once again, kudos to the individual who took time out of his routine to care for the lil guy and thereby giving him a second chance. Stay tuned as our veterinarian feels Dumper will recover quick and be back in the wild in no time.
December 2007 Update
Dumper gained some weight and is responding well to rehabilitation exercises to strengthen his wing. He is able to fully flap his wings and does get a bit of lift from it. However, despite all this success, the veterinarian has some concerns as Dumper does not appear to want to fly. It appears that he has lost his sense of positioning and will not use his wings to slow down or cushion his landing. Well there still does not seem to be any obvious health issues so the volunteers are continuing to work with him and he has been integrated into the rehab flock to see if this will help. Stay tuned as we continue to work with him.
January 2008 Update
Despite early progress, Dumper’s condition has slipped despite all treatments. Then one morning, Dumper was found wedged under one of the ramps in the flock compound. After extraction, it was painfully clear he had experienced a massive neurological event. Intensive care was instituted but no improvement was seen. The OERS Veterinarian reluctantly recommended the kindest thing to do was to euthanize him. It was clear that to do anything else would only prolong the situation.
Dumper passed away in the arms of one of the OERS volunteers after falling asleep subsequent to an anesthetic overdose. A necropsy will be conducted to attempt to clarify what was the cause of his troubles as the wing fracture had healed and was strong. We all are saddened by this loss but we know that everything that could have been done for him was; it was just not to be. No regrets and thanks once again to the kind individual that found him and called us. We never know and so we will always try to help!
Fall 2007 - Sam the Sea Gull
OERS received a call from a lady and her son in Parry Sound who found a seagull with a broken wing on a busy street. She had tried calling other places, most told her the bird would be put down. Since she had already housed the bird trying to find help, instructions were given for feeding and care until the following day, when arrangements were made for her to drop off the bird to OERS at that time.
Upon arrival, the OERS vet conducted an initial examination. Findings included an open fracture of the right wing, but more worrisome the bird was extremely thin, almost emaciated and was infested with what was confirmed to be bird mites and had bumblefoot. Treatments were initiated to immediately reduce and immobilize the fractured wing, rehydrate the bird and administer antibiotics to curb any infection. A multivitamin-Bcomplex injection and foot-cream rounded out his care. Then it was off to rest up in our cosy recovery isolation section and a wide selection of food. In the beginning, Sam as the family named him, was not eating enough food, so the OERS staff began tube feeding a fortified fish puree. After a few days, his appetite had improved and he was strong enough to get his first mite treatment. This would further strengthen him as mites can have adverse effects.
After a week he appeared to take a liking to cheese and worms, hey whatever the patient wants – they get!! Ongoing care was occurring for the broken wing. Despite an obvious initial improvement, lil Sam has an uphill battle. The overall condition of the bird concerns our Vet as she thinks it is a sign of deeper problems. He is not bouncing back as expected and his condition is at best stable.
However, we believe in trying our best and giving each patient a chance. It is our policy to always try as long as the bird is happy and not suffering. So far he is hanging in there but he is still critical. OERS staff are trying everything…Stay tuned..
September 2007 Update
Today September 24, 2007 the OERS Vet gave Sam a full exam. On the good news side, the bumblefoot is gone and he is walking normal again. One for the good guys! Also on the good side no sign of bird mites, these too are gone, which is good for Sam! However, Sam’s appetite is still off and he is not healing as he should. He is lacking energy despite multivitamin treatments and has not put on the weight he should. His fractured wing is also not as advanced in its healing as it should be, according to the OERS vet, and his demeanor is off.
Tests are being run and some additional treatments will be tried. It seems that Sam has a lot more trouble than just a broken wing. Well OERS feels ever animal should be given a chance and so we continue to do our best to give him every chance. As long as it is obvious he is not suffering we will continue to fight for him! More to come.
October 2007 Update
Sam, despite a valiant try, has not recovered and sadly, a decision was made to euthanize him as it was clear to do anything else would be unfair to him. Though OERS believes in giving every creature all the chances it was the opinion of the OERS Veterinarian that to go on
would just be cruel and the lil guy would be suffering needlessly. The care team agreed and so we euthanized him with an overdose of anesthetic. Though it was quick and painless everyone shed a tear as everyone had put in enormous effort to try to pull him through. We will not soon forget you Sam.
Summer 2007 - Bubba the Sea Gull
The caller was upset, she had found a sea gull with its wing dragging in a parking lot near Collingwood, picked it up, brought it home and tried to find a group who would care and help her. Despite numerous calls to government and private wildlife groups, no one appeared interested in assisting. After discussions with OERS staff, an agreed to drop off point was decided upon, where the concerned citizen delivered the injured sea gull. Upon arrival to the OERS facility, a full veterinary examination revealed an adult gull with a seriously broken left wing (open fracture), fractured upper beak with the tip also broken off. Obviuosly he did not win the fight with a motorized vehicle!
The wing fracture was debrided, fracture reduced, and wing immobilized. The broken beak edges were smoothed and a tissue glue used to bond the split. After a week to adapt to the facility, bandaging was reduced and finally removed completely. Bubba is now fully integrated into the living space with others as he continues to heal, and is doing very well. He has asserted his dominance rapidly and quickly earned the name “Bubba” for his tough guy attitude and bruiser behavior. Stay tuned for updates.
October 2007 Update
Bubba’s wing healing has proceeded very well since the last veterinary intervention. The skin has fully healed over and the bone ends have more fully stabilized through callus formation. This is great news for Bubba and the vet is now satisfied with his progress. No further veterinary intervention is needed and now it is time to allow his wing to fully heal and strengthen. He has been seen flapping with more vigor lately, which is a good sign. Updates to follow.
August 2007 Update
Bubba’s beak has healed and because the wing break was significant it is no surprise it is taking much longer to heal. The vet has been monitoring his progress closely but will require a follow-up intervention. His progress has been steady and he is beginning to use his wing for balance. It is most likely that the vet will do some additional work on his wing over the long weekend and then final healing will begin. He has continued to assert his bossyness and has quite the voice when he wants to! His appetite is great and he has settled in well to the rehab flock. Updates to follow as soon as the OERS vet has completed the work on the wing.
February 2008 Update
Bubba’s wing is continuing to slowly heal. It is probably the worst break we have seen and so we are not surprised by the delays. The OERS veterinarian is satisfied with the progress. Other than this wing, Bubba is in fine health, full of attitude and love of life!! It is expected that Bubba will be with us of awhile yet and as long as progress is seen we are patient. Experience shows us that given time and proper intervention, these wings can and do return to function. We are not giving up on him especially as he is not giving up either. Bubba loves to tease the others and gets lots of exercise in the rehab flock! Stay tuned for more updates.
April 2008 Update
Unfortunately, Bubba appears to have developed other systemic problems. He has suffered a decrease in appetite and is not participating in flock activities as he has in the past. The vet is concerned that the wing is not his main problem at this point and has taken blood samples for analysis and put Bubba on a medical regimen to try to help. Unfortunately, despite all possible care, Bubba continues to decline and we are faced with a tough decision. Despite massive odds against, Bubba’s wind was healing and he was makin great strides to only suddenly face this. However, it is OERS’s mandate to continue to fight for the animal unless it becomes clear that suffering far outweighs any possible hope. This is where the OERS vet felt things had gotten to and so it was felt that the kindest thing to do was to euthanize Bubba. So, with all the staff around who had cared so much for bubba throughout, Bubba was given an injection, and he went to sleep quietly, after which the vet gave the final drug and Bubba was gone. It is always difficult but necessary id we are to be responsible custodians of the animals we take care of.
2000 - Seymor the Second - broken wing rescued & treated, & released successfully
This wayward seagull was found by the side of parking lot in Barrie Ontario, Canada, dragging his right wing and unable to fly. He was captured, treated by our OERS Veterinarian and then taken home by one of the OERS volunteers. The first week consisted of cage rest with his wing bandaged and by the second week, his wing already began to show improvement and gentle physiotherapy began.
By the end of the week, outside exercise sessions were initiated and by the third week, he began bathing in the garden pool (picture) and was no longer restricted to the cage. At one month from the rescue he began to fly around his pen with some control. It was now clear he wanted to return to his life in the wild and on a cool fall morning, we went to a local park in the vicinity of where he was found and gave him his freedom.
After an initial hesitation, probably more from fear and uncertainty on his abilities he took one tentative short flight, landed, looked back at us and took off soaring once again the skies to which he was intended. He never looked back - the ingrate!!! Go Seymor, have a safe and happy life.