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The BC SPCA’s Wild ARC has successfully released two uncommon bird species back into the wild.
A Virginia Rail was brought into the centre after it was suspected that it was hit by a car, and a Sora was admitted after the bird had hit someone’s window.
Both of the patients are migratory shorebirds who predominantly use freshwater wetlands and coastline salt marshes, so it is very unusual to have these types of birds in care at Wild ARC.
“Upon arrival, both birds had suffered head trauma and were showing signs of brain swelling,” says Tara Thom, assistant manager, Wild ARC.
“The Virginia Rail had suffered central nervous system damage and had issues standing on its own. Both patients were not eating much as a result of the head trauma they had suffered.”
After giving the birds a chance to rest and stabilize, medications and fluids were administered, and specialized diets were provided to encourage eating more and gaining weight.
Soon, the appetite and strength of both birds improved.
“These species of birds are extremely high stress and their success rate in care is very low,” says Thom.
“Our staff were careful to work quickly to make sure these patients healed and recovered with minimal handling and stress. After a couple of weeks in care, the Sora and Virginia Rail were both flying very well and were both successfully released.”
Thom says British Columbians can prevent situations like the ones above by purchasing window alerts for windows and by slowing down when driving as the days get shorter and daylight hours change.
The birds rehabilitation was costly, and the public is invited to donate to Wild ARC so they can continue to help injured wildlife.
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