Feeding baby birds sugar water

Helping Injured Wild Birds

Helping Injured Wild Birds
Helping Injured
Wild Birds
Modified from
Rainier Audubon's
web page.


Karen M. Dvornich
Certified Wildlife Rehabilitator



Nestlings are babies without all of their feathers and who cannot regulate their own heat.

Mother birds DO NOT abandon their babies if people touch them! Birds CANNOT smell human scent!

Birds' temperatures are 100°, which means they need to stay warm. Nestlings are even more vulnerable, so make a nest using a towel lined with paper towel strips and put them in a box with a heating pad (set on LOW) under the box. The heating pad may overheat the nestlings, so don't put it directly under the nest; move it off to the side.

If you know where the nest is, put the babies back into it and walk far away so the mother will return.

If you don't know where the nest is, but the mother is flying over the babies (or you holding the babies), make a nest from a berry box and line it with shredded paper towels and fasten it up into a tree. At night, bring the babies and the nest back into the house for warmth. (Check to make sure the mother isn't sitting on your nest before you bring the nest back into the house. If she is, leave it alone.)

If all else fails, call a rehabilitator. Nestlings need to be fed every half to one hour, from sunrise to sunset, so while you are locating a rehabilitator, mix 1 teaspoon of sugar in 1/4 cup of water and give the nestlings a few drops of the sugar water (or feed them small worms using tweezers). Put the eye dropper or tweezers in the back of the nestlings' open mouths. It is VERY IMPORTANT that you do not squirt water into the nostrils or into the front of the beak because the water will be aspirated into their lungs causing pneumonia. Nestlings need to feel a "beak" at the back of their mouths to know when to close their beaks and swallow.

You can add oat bran, strained beef baby food, egg yolks baby food to the sugar water to provide protein. The mixture needs to be thin enough to go through an eye dropper. If any food gets on the nestlings, wipe it off immediately.


Fledglings are young, fully feathered birds who leave the nest, but can not fly very well. They will hop onto branches and call to the parents for food. They will not go back to their nest. THE MAJORITY OF BIRDS PICKED UP BY PEOPLE ARE FLEDGLINGS!

Nestlings have yellow or pink beaks. Fledglings will have still have some of those colors at the corners of their beaks.

The best thing to do is to put the fledgling back into a tree, on a high and protected branch and leave it alone. It will take anywhere from 3 (Robin) to 7 (Crow) days before the fledgling will be able to completely maneuver and follow its parents.

If you do not know where the fledgling came from, then call a rehabilitator. Fledglings can regulate their own heat but need to eat every hour or two.


The bacteria in a cat's saliva will cause a infection that can kill a bird if the bird's skin has been broken. An antiseptic (hydrogen peroxide, Bactine, not alcohol) should be administered to the wound IMMEDIATELY, then call a rehabilitator.

During baby season (May through August), owners should make every effort to keep their cats indoors. Once a cat knows where there is a nest, it will kill all the babies. Cats with bells on their collars can still catch a bird because they don't move until they leap for the bird.

Click HERE for more information about the impacts that cats have on our birds.


Birds see the reflection of the trees on windows and will fly into them. Usually they are stunned and should be picked up and put into a box until they get their senses back. OPEN THE BOX OUTSIDE WHEN YOU WANT TO CHECK ON THE BIRD, OTHERWISE YOU MAY HAVE A LOOSE BIRD IN YOUR HOUSE. If a bird will perch on a stick, you can take it out and put it on a bush in a protected area. It may take a few hours or a day or so before the bird flies away.

During that time, the bird will not want food or water. If you have the bird more than 24 hours, you should offer it some sugar water with an eye dropper, gently squirting some on the side of the beak to get them to open their mouths and swallow for themselves.

Several techniques have been suggested to try and prevent bird from flying into windows. One method is to put a large bird silhouette on the glass. They may think its a predator and stay away. You can make one from black construction paper or buy one at a local wildbird supply store. A send way is to hang brightly colored and/or metallic streamers across the middle of the window. The motion and color may help to keep the birds away.


Throw a towel over the bird. When they can't see, they calm down. Birds with sharp beaks may strike at shining objects (your eyes) while hawks and owls have talons that can pierce your hand.

If the bird is a hawk or owl, and if you do not have any thick gloves, throw a towel over the bird and grab the bird from behind, closing your hands around the wings. Let its talons grab at the air or the towel.

Find a box large enough for the bird to move around in and can accomodate them on a perch a couple of inches from the bottom. Punch two holes in the box a couple of inches from the bottom and push a stick through the holes for the bird to perch. The size of the stick will depend on the size of the bird. The bird should be able to completely close its foot around the stick. Put the stick in before you put the bird in the box. Make a few small holes for air to get in. Put the bird (and towel if they are still holding on to it) into the box and cover or close the box.

Keep the bird warm, away from other animals and wash your hands after handling.


  • Canada geese with broken legs or wings near water are almost impossible to catch. (Ever hear of the "wild goose chase"?) Most geese are not migratory and will survive as long as they have food and water.
  • Canada geese parents will accept any other Canada goose gosling, but Mallard females will kill any baby that is not theirs.
  • If you find a pigeon with a band on it, it is most likely a lost racing pigeon. You can either feed it for a few days and see if it will leave on its own (not very likely). If it doesn't call a rehabilitator.
  • Baby raptors are adult size when they leave the nest! People mis-identify Screech owls as baby Great horned owls.
  • Many owls are hit by cars and only suffer a concussion. It may take a couple of days to a week before the owl is able to fly, and until then seems very docile. Treat the owl the same as you would a bird who flew into a window and call a rehabilitator. If you can not find a rehabilitator after 24 hours you must feed the owl by cutting up a mouse (or beef heart) into small pieces and using tweezers, tap the beak to get the bird's attention. Push the piece of meat into beak and let the bird swallow on its own.
  • Fog deposits moisture on asphalt and many waterbirds (grebes, cormorants, etc.) mistake the asphalt for water and "land" on it. These birds need to propel themselves through the water to take off, so are stranded when on land. Get the bird to the nearest lake or beach as soon as possible. Be careful of their sharp beaks.
  • It is very important to stop bleeding as soon as possible, but do not apply bandaids or wrap wings. You can cause more damage to the wound. If a bird can not stand, prop it up using a towel and put it into a warm, dark box. Call a rehabilitator.
  • Many people get very attached to the animals they find, but it is against the law to keep wildlife as pets.


Mercer County Wildlife Center          (609) 883-6606
     State Highway 29
     3 mi South of Lambertville

Cats Indoors Please! Other concerns for our feathered friends!

If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact either of the following:

Note: Due to SPAM issues, the e-mail addresses do not automatically open an e-mail anymore.

Last revision: Saturday, March 21, 1998

Basic bird care


A naked baby bird must be kept on heat. If the bird feels cool,  the bird is too cold.  Placing a heating pad on low under half of the container allows even a naked baby bird to move off, or closer to, the heat if it chooses.


Weak or injured birds usually need rehydrating. They can slowly be given sips of Gatorade or a sugar water mixture which can then be given by dipping your finger in the liquid and running your finger along its beak so the liquid can slowly seep inside. Sugar water mixture is five parts water to one part sugar or honey.


Carefully place the bird in a covered container (allow for air holes). The container should be soft, warm and padded. Keep the bird in a quiet place, giving it access to heat.


All baby birds should be fed for 12 hours daily (e.
g. 8am to 8pm)

Most formulas should NOT be microwaved, as it will kill the probiotics in the mix. Made formula can be kept in the fridge for up to four hours (BE SURE TO WARM BEFORE GIVING TO A BABY) and if it isn't a hot day or house has air-conditioning, up to two hours.  Doves should receive fresh formula each time they are fed.

The "belly" area (right in front of the vent) of all the birds listed here can be felt to determine whether or not more feed needs to be given. The area will protrude a bit like a round paunch but should not feel taut or stretched. Sometimes babies will ask for more when they are already full, Mejiros particularly, and if fed, may bring up food and aspirate. All of these birds have a tracheal (breathing) hole that is very noticeable when they gape; it is behind the tongue on the lower mandible (lower beak). Do NOT try to push the syringe down this hole, but rather put it behind the hole.

Never feed birds tomatoes, potatoes, avocados, chocolate, or dairy products (with the exception of cottage cheese for softbills). Mynahs can also be given hard cheeses (parmesan, Romano) in limited quantities.

For detailed information on what and how to feed a bird, click on its species name or picture below.

Wild bird diets

Brazilian Cardinal
Brazilian Cardinal

A softbill that thrives on fruit

bulbul diet

Brazilian Cardinal
Brazilian Cardinal
Brazilian Cardinal

An omnivore that can be especially tricky to feed

Brazilian cardinal diet

Brazilian Cardinal
Finch, Northern Cardinal, Waxbill

A seed-eater that needs to be tube-fed when young

dove / pigeon diet

Finch, Northern Cardinal, Waxbill
Finch, Northern Cardinal, Waxbill
Finch, Northern Cardinal, Waxbill


finch / northern cardinal / waxbill diet

Finch, Northern Cardinal, Waxbill

Near-constant eaters, but easy to feed

mejiro diet

Finch, Northern Cardinal, Waxbill

An omnivore that needs a low-iron diet

mynah diet

White tern


shama diet

White tern

This sea bird requires special handling; 

call Sea Life Park at (808) 259-7933

Contact sea life park

White tern
White tern
White tern

This sea bird requires special handling; 

call Hui Manu-o-ku at (808) 379-7555

contact Hui Manu-o-Ku

How to save a chick that has fallen out of the nest | Encyclopedia of Animals

With the advent of warm weather, our forests and gardens are filled with bird songs, and people, in turn, try to spend as much time as possible outdoors. During outdoor recreation, helpless chicks are often found. Naturally, there is a desire to save the life of a baby, but not everyone knows how to save a chick that has fallen out of the nest. Let's see how we can help him.

To save or not to save - that is the question

The first thought that arises when looking at a fledgling and flightless chick is “fell out of the nest”, “lost” and even “parents abandoned and forgot”. In fact, the chick is alone, no brothers, sisters, or adult birds are visible nearby, and it also screams loudly. How can you help here? But the fact of the matter is that help in 95% of cases in such situations is not needed.

The fact is that in many birds (primarily small passerines) chicks leave the nest as half-fledged fledglings. During this period of life, they still do not know how to fly, but they are already actively exploring the surrounding space - they climb branches, clumsily flit. It is these rather active chicks that fall into the field of human vision. It is easy to determine the fledgling in appearance: it is feathered or covered with rudiments of unopened feathers; the chick is quite large (about 50-70% of the size of a sparrow), it is often active, that is, it opens its mouth and asks for food. Parents did not abandon this chick, but simply flew away for food. Of course, while you are standing next to the chick, they will not make themselves felt. And if you stay too long, then there is a chance that the parents will leave him out of concern.

Even if the chick looks too small and helpless, don't rush to classify it as an orphan. Birds such as warblers, warblers, larks, wagtails nest on the ground, their chicks spend their entire childhood on the grass. Your presence in this situation is also undesirable because magpies and crows track human behavior. Smart birds can check after you leave what you saw there, find and kill the chick. Hence the conclusion: do not "save" everything that catches your eye. If the chick is dry, warm, active, well feathered, then he does not need help.

What if the situation causes concern? Perhaps the chick is too weak or obviously fell out of the nest from a great height and cannot be returned to its parents. In this case, you can try to save him, but keep in mind that the likelihood of success will be directly proportional to your diligence, and you will have to put in a lot of work.

What to do first

  1. Quickly and carefully inspect the place where you found the chick, remember how it looks. In some cases, this will help determine the type of bird.
  2. Take the chick in your hands (do not squeeze hard!) and bring him home as soon as possible.
  3. On the way, inspect the chick for damage. If the bird has clearly visible fractures of the paws, wings, concussion (how to define it a little lower), then you can’t do without a veterinarian. It is highly desirable to seek help from a veterinarian who specializes specifically in the treatment of birds (unfortunately, such specialists are extremely rare). If there are no obvious signs of a fracture, and the general condition of the chick is satisfactory, then it is better not to torment him, but simply to provide good conditions - nature will do its job and he will recover.
  4. Providing the chick with food as soon as possible is even more important than furnishing a home for it.

Now a few words on how to define shell shock. Usually, chicks get severe bruises either from hitting the ground or when they collide with cars. At the same time, the bird has no wounds on the outside, but a concussion is observed. True signs of this condition are bleeding from the nostrils, paralysis of both legs or paralysis of half of the body (paw and wing on one side), closure of one eye, or unequal degree of pupil dilation on the injured and healthy side of the body.

What to feed

You may think that feeding a chick is easy - crumble bread and crumble. But here you will find disappointment number 2. Chicks do not eat bread, crackers, porridge, cereals, seeds. They don't eat at all. Even the chicks of granivorous birds do not take dry food at first. And the reason is that the growing organism needs proteins, therefore, in nature, even granivorous birds feed their offspring with animal food and exceptionally soft food. You will have to do the same. Pigeons are the only exception. They feed the chicks with goiter secretions - bird's milk, and then with semi-digested grains. If you picked up a pigeon chick, then you can feed it with unsalted porridge, gradually reducing the degree of cooking. In other cases, the best food for the chick is mealworms, cockroaches, crickets, darkling larvae - zoophobus (all these foods are sold in pet stores), earthworms (you can dig up), caterpillars (you will have to collect), a boiled egg (only as an additional food, and not a substitute for anything and everything). Even if you have provided the chick with the listed food, it is recommended to periodically catch bugs, grasshoppers, butterflies, flies, mosquitoes and give these insects to him, because the more varied the diet, the healthier your ward will grow. Very weak chicks should be given glucose-sweetened water (not sugar syrup!), instead of solid food, for the first few hours.

What not to feed the chicks

  • dead insects - no matter what species they belong to and wherever you find them. In nature, insects almost never live to old age, rather someone will eat them. If you find a dead cockroach behind the stove or a dead locust in the garden - do not rush to rejoice. Most likely, this individual died from an insecticide, which means that the poison from the feed can enter the body of the chick and greatly harm its already poor health;
  • Colorado potato beetles - adults, larvae and eggs are poisonous in this species. They are not eaten by any species of birds, so this easily accessible resource will have to be forgotten;
  • ladybugs - they secrete a moderately toxic liquid, in nature a bird that has caught such a bug by mistake will spit it out. In captivity, especially in the case of force-feeding the chick, he does not have the opportunity to refuse harmful food, so he can get poisoned;
  • hairy caterpillars - firstly, they can be poisonous, and secondly, the villi during feeding can clog the chick's goiter and it will die. Although cuckoos and orioles can eat in the temperate hairy strip, it is still better to play it safe and not use this food;
  • brightly colored bugs - in nature, many birds willingly peck at such insects, but this mainly concerns nondescript turtle bugs. The back of the bug, decorated with bright spots or stripes, is of a warning nature - "do not eat me, it will be worse for you." For safety net, it is not necessary to catch such specimens for the chick.

How to feed

The main thing you should know from the very beginning is that birds have a very high metabolism, and small chicks have a huge metabolic rate. Any food eaten by the chicks is digested very quickly and they need to be fed again and again. In nature, parents jointly feed the brood 100-500 times a day! This means that every 10-15 minutes the chick needs to be fed. And don't expect to overtrain him! A chick deprived of food instantly weakens, a couple of hours of hunger is enough for it to die. You will have to provide the baby with constant supervision, feed him at first every 15 minutes, and when he grows up a little, after 20-30. But you need to take a break at night, but start the first feeding no later than 6 o'clock in the morning! Evening feeding is completed around sunset, that is, around 22.00.

It is more convenient to bring food with tweezers. In general, tactile contact should be kept to a minimum, frequent touching is stressful for the tiny creature, and it worsens the condition of down and feathers. If the chick is very small and naked, then it is not necessary to give it a whole large insects. In this case, it is better to cut them with tweezers and feed them in pieces. It is also recommended to remove hard elytra from large beetles, long legs from grasshoppers and locusts. Often the chicks refuse to take any food. This happens because they do not recognize you as their mother, or they are so weak that they have lost their appetite. In this case, you will have to force-feed the ward. To do this, you need to crush the food and fill it with a syringe without a needle (you can add a couple of drops of water to dilute the mixture). Take the bird in your left hand and gently spread its beak with your fingers, insert a syringe into its mouth with your right hand and squeeze out about 1 cm³ of slurry. Do not overdo it! In tiny chicks, the beak is easily broken, and this is already a fatal injury. For greater convenience, a flexible tube can be put on the end of the syringe.

Where to house

If the first difficulties do not dampen your enthusiasm, then you should provide the chick with shelter in your home. First of all, you need to make a nest.

Take a deep bowl or cardboard box with a rim about 10 cm high. Fill this container with sawdust, dry clean sand, hay, straw, scraps of cloth, make a recess in the middle that imitates the nest tray. Do not fill the container with fresh grass, raw material can cause hypothermia of the chick, because there is no one to warm it in an artificial house. By the way, if you are seriously engaged in rescue, you can purchase a small thermal mat at the pet store, it will to some extent replace the mother's warmth for your pupil. Also, cotton wool, yarn, fabrics with a rare weave of threads can be considered dangerous fillers. The paws of a chick are easily tangled in such material, and a tightened thread can even amputate the fingers of a feathered baby. Lay a paper napkin in the tray in 2-3 layers. Chicks defecate as often as they eat; in nature, their parents monitor their hygiene and take the litter out of the nest. You just need to change the napkin after each feeding. So, the nest is ready.

Now we need to think about security. In the house of the savior, stupid children, blind-sighted grandmothers, dogs, cats can live, and there are also curious neighbors who have dropped in for a minute. All these creatures threaten the life of a little chick: children can grab it and squeeze it in a fist (certain death), dogs and cats can arrange a hunt (you won’t even find feathers), a blind grandmother will sit by chance on a box (well, don’t execute the old woman for this), and noisy neighbors can accidentally knock it over (“Tanya, I’ll come to you for a second for salt, oh, it seems that something has fallen here!”). To prevent trouble, it is better to place the nest in a cage or an aquarium covered with gauze. In the cage, do not try to put the chick on the perch, do not place it in closed containers (jars, etc.). Don't nest on high ground. The fact is that a weak chick can get stronger and, unexpectedly for you, will go to explore the surrounding space. He is guaranteed to fall out of his shelter and, unlike the forest and the meadow, it will not be soft grass waiting for him at the bottom, but the floor. You should not put the box with the chick in the sun, so you will not warm it, and the helpless bird is guaranteed to get sunstroke and may die. Drafts are very dangerous.

Do chicks need water?

In nature, chicks of passerines do not need water, as they get enough moisture with food. After all, adult birds do not bring them water in their beaks. At home, you can do without watering the chick if you follow the diet, that is, you give a variety of, and most importantly, “wet” food - earthworms, fatty juicy caterpillars. Flies, cockroaches, crickets (they are most often bought in a store) can be conditionally classified as “dry” food. They do not give the chick enough moisture. In this case, he can instill a few drops of liquid from a pipette, but do this not at every feeding, but a little less often. Please note that shell-shocked chicks should not be given water.

What to do next?

Fortunately, the chicks grow up quickly and the period of trouble soon passes, in a week or two your ward may get stronger. In order for the feeding process to be completed successfully, do not forget to gradually accustom the chick to adult food. For granivorous birds, this can be porridge cooked without salt, small grains (millet, rice chaff). Chicks of insectivorous species will have to be supplemented with insects. No matter how hard you try, your chick will be weaker than its wild counterparts and completely unsuitable for independent living. There is nothing you can do to help him, so you have to take responsibility for his life. The grown bird will have to be left as a room. If you are not ready to keep a bird (you need to think about this from the very beginning), then it is better not to take the chick home at all. So he will have at least a meager chance to survive. But if you are not afraid of difficulties, then the saved life of the feathered one will be the reward for the labors.

The recommendations in this article are mainly focused on the rearing of passerines and pigeons, as these are the most commonly found. Chicks of large birds (eagles, cranes, owls, storks, etc.) are best transferred to the zoo, where they are guaranteed professional veterinary care.

What to do if you find a chick? — Bel.ru

Biologist Olga Kuvykina warns against the main mistakes that citizens make when picking up chicks that have fallen out of the nest.

Every summer I receive letters asking me to help feed the chicks. They begin the same way: “The chicks have fallen out of the nest! There are cats, people, cars around, so I took them home. But what to do now? Sometimes they literally blackmail me, they press on pity, that if I don’t take the bird, it will die. These unfortunate rescuers write in social networks how kind they are, and how callous everyone around is. But callousness should not be confused with realism and understanding of the situation.

Different countries have different attitudes towards birds. Costa Rica, for example, lives in ecotourism, so drinking bowls with sugar water for hummingbirds hang in the courtyards of hotels, and groups of birdwatchers - bird watchers - roam the forests from morning to night, hugging huge cameras.

In the Netherlands, birds are not offended, and herons sit on the hoods of cars, and songbirds let them at arm's length.

In Cyprus and Italy snacks made from warblers, goldfinches and other small songbirds have become fashionable. Millions of birds fall into the net every year and end up in the stomachs of gourmets. The number of songbirds is falling. Barbarism, the new Middle Ages, senseless cruelty.

In Laos, they eat everything that moves because they are hungry, so not only birds, but also frogs and beetles get it.

Russians fall into two extremes: from complete indifference, when they do not notice even such bright and large beauties in the yard as bullfinches and jays, to strong pity and kindness, and this kindness kills.

The babies of most of our birds leave the nests, not yet able to fly normally. Having scattered around the area, they are more likely to survive than sitting in one nest in front of predators. Such teenage flyers are called fledglings. They sit in the bushes, squeak and wait for their parents. Parents look after them, feed them, teach them to get food and recognize enemies. Adult tits rarely fall into the clutches of predators, but naive fledglings that themselves jump into their mouths easily. Therefore, broods of small birds are numerous and are calculated on the fact that out of six, say, two will survive. The most courageous, smart and maneuverable.

The first few days of departure from the nest are the most dangerous. Thrush chicks sit in the grass, where they are strangled by dogs - both stray and owner. Dogs hunt for ducklings and other waterfowl - just today I had to say something to the owner of a husky and pit bull, who set his pets on the moorhens in the pond.

Moorhens (they are confused with ducks, but they are relatives of cranes), grebes, swans and ducks of various species are our native wild fauna that require protection, while dogs are an invasive species that must be controlled.

If desired, the dog can be trained not to chase birds and cats. The running of dogs after other animals in many countries is fraught with the dogs themselves - in the reserves they have the right to shoot them, otherwise deer and other animals driven by dogs die from wounds and stress.

Jays, crows, geese and some other birds are no more stupid than dogs. They suffer greatly when they eat their babies. When a White Swiss Shepherd came to me, I quickly weaned it from running after hedgehogs and other animals. The dog turned out to be very smart, he understood my every word.

Another problem for waterfowl is the “cultivation” of water areas. Along the banks of the reservoirs, grass is mowed and concrete embankments are made. The ducklings are unable to get out of the water to rest on land and die. In Moscow, mass death of ducklings was noted after the transformation of parks into a concrete jungle. People who care save the birds - they make floating wooden rafts for them. A lot of rafts are needed, as more aggressive swans and shelducks take them away from mallards. An ideal place for ducks, as well as for nightingales and bluethroats nesting on the ground, in the bushes near the water, is a pond near which they never mow and set fire to the grass, do not mow the bushes and, of course, leave the banks as nature created them ! By the way, in several parks of the capital nightingales almost disappeared after "cultivation".

Titmouses, robins and blackbirds jumping in the bushes, and even such exotic things as corncrake chicks that look like black chickens, of course, attract the attention of compassionate citizens. They take the "orphans" home. And in vain! The only possible help for fledglings is to put them higher in dense bushes and leave, taking cats and dogs with them. No need to stomp around the chicks for a long time, attracting the attention of crows. The rest is what I would call the “feed your conscience” metaphor.

Fledglings are brought home and fed with bread, meat, cat food, milk. Fledglings of insectivorous birds with the most delicate intestines! Of course, they die from poisoning. It happens that people go to the necessary forums and publics in VK, for example, maybirds.ru, determine the type of bird and find out that you can only feed fledglings with insects. They buy crickets at the pet store and still feed the birds. But the question arises - why? Fosterlings will not survive in the forest without rehabilitation. They will die. Fed up, released from the balcony and rejoice? The next day there will be nothing left of the chicks. If you take them to the forest and launch them into a flock of nomadic songbirds, then there is a chance.

To increase the survival rate from 10 to 90, you need to leave the birds at home for life or organize rehabilitation for them - build a large aviary in the country with grass, bushes and insects, and teach your feathered friends to get food on their own. It is advisable to feed a flock of tits and other wild birds nearby so that the fledglings can communicate with them. You can contact the wildlife centers. There are few of them in Russia, and mostly they are private - people save animals with their own money and on their own. It's hard. That is, it is unlikely that you will be happy to accept a thrush chick, but the chicks of birds of prey are usually welcome. Predators are listed in the Red Book. They are large and easier to handle.

When in front of you is not a fledgling, but a chick, that is, a half-naked creature, then the question is why did it fall? Usually the weak, sick fall out, they are not residents anyway. But healthy ones can also fall into a hurricane. You can try to find a nest, bring a ladder and put the chicks back. It's a myth that their parents won't accept them. Birds have a weak sense of smell.

The chick is wounded, the wing hangs, the leg is broken, but you stubbornly take it out of the dog's mouth? Surgery of small birds in the Russian Federation is not developed. Such a chick is a suicide bomber in most cases.

In Europe, wild animals are often euthanized if they realize that they cannot be helped - for example, woodpeckers with broken beaks, chicks with numerous fractures, foxes that have been hit by cars. You can not watch how a living being slowly dies in agony. The state veterinary police arrives and does everything necessary. The decision is made by specialists: ordinary citizens are freed from this ethical torment. Minor fractures in owls and other birds of prey are treatable, but long-term rehabilitation in an aviary is needed.

Are you ready to feed/treat your chick? Do you want to give it to someone as soon as possible, relieve yourself of the burden of responsibility, although you found the bird? It will be more honest to pass by if it is a common species like a thrush. Rare birds, of course, are better to pick up. An owl can always be attached to some living corner, but not a thrush - a noisy and grumpy bird.

Robins, redstarts, great tits, titmouse, crows, gray flycatchers, pied flycatchers, green woodpeckers nest in my yard every year. This year, a couple of black woodpeckers came - outlandish, huge birds. And all this under the noses of the cats that were thrown to me, and I cured them, sterilized and vaccinated them. Wagtail parents rush at cats when they pass by chicks.

Living nearby cats and birds is quite possible under certain conditions. You can't mow all the grass. You can not cut all the bushes. Goldfinches and bullfinches eat the seeds of dandelions, burdocks and vesicles. Fledglings hide in tall grass. Insects live in dense forbs, with which birds feed their babies.

Burning and mowing kill caterpillars and other insects. Including, by the way, rare and beautiful butterflies. So, the caterpillar of the wine hawk moth - it is pink in color - feeds on willow-tea, and they also like to mow it. Caterpillars of bright butterflies-urticaria and peacock's eye eat mainly nettles. We mowed all the nettles - goodbye, cute butterflies.

Cats must wear bright, wide collars that are visible to birds. On the trunks of trees where the birds made a nest, you can attach a plastic "collar", then no one will climb the tree.

By the way, crows and jays willingly eat ducklings and songbird chicks, but these feathered bandits are so smart and interesting that I can't call them "harmful". Once I made friends with a fledgling of a crow - I treated him to a little pieces of meat, and he saw me off, flew after me. His parents all summer scolded the chick for such trust in a person, and in the fall they flew away with him somewhere far away. I treat the jay with walnuts, acorns, slices of white bread. Bullfinches, tits and squirrels - nuts and seeds. Anything salty, fried, and moldy is poison to birds.

Orioles and titmouse sing in the yard in the mornings, nightingales and redstarts sing at night. I don't like listening to the radio, I prefer silence and birdsong.

A characteristic sign of the onset of a warm, stable spring is the return of swifts from Africa home. They are often confused with swallows, although, unlike swallows, these birds fly at the speed of fighters, almost do not get sick and emit a loud, shrill “Vzii-iiii!”.

Swifts, oddly enough, do not have fledglings. Chicks fly out of the nest when they are already adapted to adulthood. Hitting the walls of houses, sometimes swifts fall to the ground and lie there for some time, stunned. The paws are short, the wings are long - you can’t take off from the ground. You need to take the swift in your hands, climb the hill, lift the bird up, and it will fly away by itself.

Quite often too curious chicks fall out of their nests under the roofs and lie on the pavement. If it is not possible to plant the birds back, then you can become their foster parents for a month or two. Swifts do everything in flight, even drink on the fly. Parents do not need to teach them any special skills. So manual swifts can and should be released immediately. They will join the flock and fly to Africa in August.

Feeding a haircut is not so easy - every two hours you have to stuff him with the abdomens of frozen banana crickets and drink water from a pipette. Crickets with delivery are easily ordered via the Internet. I recommend reading about all the intricacies of feeding a shear on the portal “Give the sky to a bird!”.

It's funny that one day it was a predator - a cat - who helped save a swift. I often walked with a brilliant black cat who understood me as a person. He followed me around everywhere. He did not offend birds, but sometimes he caught mice. The cat led me to the house where the chick fell out - the cat knew about it, but I didn’t. He sat down next to me and meowed. Around the haircut were people who tried to feed him bread. I took a naked swift home. When he grew up and took off from my palm clearly upwards, like a rocket, it was a little sad - I became attached to him ...

P . S .: This is what Olga wrote after reading the publication on the Bel.Ru news agency portal about the destruction of swallow nests during the overhaul:

- The photos are horrendous. But in Russia, swallows have always been loved and welcomed.

These are completely helpless chicks, and even wounded. They are suicide bombers. It remains only to bury them.

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