Jan 23 - Jan 29

Bird of the Month: Red-tailed Hawk

In 2016 the most common raptor admitted were Red-tailed Hawks (79). Already in 2017, twelve Red-tailed Hawks have been admitted, six in the past week. The week also brought a Sharp-shinned Hawk, 4 owls including another Screech Owl trapped in another chimney, a Coot, a Robin and a Meadowlark caught by a cat. We have admitted 45 birds this month, as compared to 26 by this time in 2016. Hopefully the birds will fare better as the weather improves.

RTHA 17-040

This big female Red-tailed Hawk died while we were examining her. A radiograph revealed an old injury. Notice the asymmetry in the two shoulders. The bird was quite thin, but you can see that the muscles in the right shoulder are much smaller than the left. A necropsy found lesions in multiple air sacs caused by the fungus aspergillus. The fungus is commonly found in the environment and birds stressed by injury and starvation, like this bird, are susceptible to aspergillosis.

RTHA 17-040 rad.001

RTHA 17-039

Many birds admitted for care have been struck by a vehicle. That is likely the case for this hawk. The left wing has been immobilized with a figure-8 bandage. The two ulna fractures will likely heal. Of more concern is the damage to the left wrist. It may result in arthritis and significant reduction in range of motion. Time will tell.

RTHA 17-039 rad.001

Long-eared Owl 17-042

This Long-eared Owl flew into the grill of a (moving) pickup truck, fracturing her left wing and right leg. Traction was applied to get better alignment and the leg was splinted. The wing was immobilized with a bandage, but like the hawk, the concern is that the wrist joint will be compromised.

LEOW 17-042.001

Below, intern Becca, recovers the Long-eared Owl from anesthesia. Becca is a student at Whitman College in Walla Walla and is staying at the center Friday through Sunday until the end of May. Becca took the amazing picture of the owl’s bruised left ear.

Becca & LEOW
LEOW ear

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Location: 71046 Appaloosa Lane, Pendleton, Oregon 97801
Email: lynn@bluemountainwildlife.org
Phone: 541.278.0215

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