[Tweeters] RE: returning nestling to nest - addendum

Jim Greaves lbviman at blackfoot.net
Sat Feb 27 19:15:52 PST 2010

I forgot to mention: be cognizant of the presence of jays or crows
nearby, and make every effort to ensure that they do not "perceive"
that you are at a nest [and of course chase your cats and dogs away,
and look for snakes]... Avoid putting the chick(s) back if it might
cause parents to start scolding - wait for parents to finish with
nestlings still being tended and head out for more food, then slip in
quietly (even if corvids are nearby, as long as no fuss occurs,
things should be fine - use your judgment, but if corvid more than 30
feet away, and not able to see the nest, it should be safe). If the
chick is fussy, cup one hand over it to calm it, while gently holding
it in the other. YOU MUST HOLD THE WINGS AND gently HOLD THE FEET to
the body in order to help calm it. Any chick that is capable of
running or hopping, is also capable of escaping one's hand...
predators key in on "flutter flight"... Best solution: grip firmly
but gently ABOVE the "knuckle" or what we might think of as the
"knee" joint between tarsus and bone [femur?] above it, but again,
gently. Never grasp bird by its feet, as in young birds they are not
fully ossified and toes are fragle; be VERY gentle with tarsus as
well as that is not done ossifying, as is the rest of the bird's
bone... Good luck. Or, better, have faith in your ability to do it
right. Birds are resilient if treated well!" :-) - Jim Greaves

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