The Wild Bird Fund provides care and rehabilitation to wildlife through private donations and mostly volunteer labor.
It’s a storefront operation, not sleek but busy.
I go to this unique working hospital to observe, support, ask questions and see up close, who (animal-wise) has been visiting NYC these days.
Patients have included:
• A Great Horned Owl, who was cured of west Nile virus;
• A black (1 in 10,000) Eastern Grey Squirrel with burned paws and a cut up nose who was nursed, released and started raising a family in a newly built squirrel house.
• A Red Tailed Hawk who had eaten a too much near the Central Park Reservoir, wound up in the water and was too heavy to get aloft. Found, he was blow-dried, rehabilitated and released.
• A Peregrine Falcon (pictured) picked up in Brooklyn, unable to stand or fly, had two broken coracoid bones, was dehydrated and underweight. What kind of mugger might have done this? – another angry Peregrine falcon. This young victim had flown into another falcon’s territory and had been mugged. The force of a falcon’s dive, which can reach over 200mph, can kill or severely injure on impact, like this attacker had, but this victim made a complete recovery.
On a side note, almost every bird that is brought in has some degree of lead poisoning. I wonder if we do, too.
Watch an uplifting video about the hospital’s noble work here.
Take the 1, B or C Train to 86th, walk one block to Columbus.