Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Injured Birds Show Pluck

 Considering the thousands of birds we see annually around St. John's, we see very few injured birds. The four shown here, I think, constitute the highest number of wounded birds we have seen in the area at one time.
This little Semipalmated Plover has been hunkering down for more than three weeks at Third Pond in Goulds. It hops around on one leg and makes no effort to fly.
The newest arrival is this White-rumped Sandpiper that showed up in Blackhead on the weekend. It seemed to be a fresh-arrival  blown in on the recent high winds.
 This bird looked tired and calm, staying in one area and making no attempt to fly.
A closer look at this sandpiper shows some damage to its right wing.
 Looking so cute and helpless, it is hard not to gently lift this little bird and take it home to nurse it back to health. However, it goes against all the rules to do so.
A Greater Yellowlegs routinely frequenting Virginia Lake has been around for at least three weeks. Its left leg is in bad shape.
This Herring Gull tagged 2A was seen last year at Quidi Vidi Lake. It recently returned after a summer away. Despite the serious injury to its right leg, this gull is thriving.

It is hard to watch these birds suffer, but they either learn to adapt to the affliction or they perish. Those that maintain the ability to fly seem to have the best chance for survival.

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