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Urgent, need advice for taking care of baby bird

  1. Apr 17, 2015 #1
    I found this baby bird in the parking lot with no trees above it. I have no idea how it got there. So I brought it inside and I don't know what to do. It keeps opening its mouth. What can I feed it? Is there any realistic chance this thing will survive? Thanks.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 17, 2015 #2
    Actually, I just read that I could make a make-shift nest and put it in a tree or something that was near where I found it. I think I'm going to do that. I hope the parent birds will find it.
  4. Apr 17, 2015 #3
    I'm no expert, but I think it's too young to survive without a momma or pappa bird. I would call your local humane society or animal rescue for advice.
  5. Apr 17, 2015 #4


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    One may wish to call a veterinarian or wild life rehabilitator in the one's area.

    It's quite complicated.

    http://www.rainbowwildlife.com/baby-bird.htm [Broken]

    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  6. Apr 17, 2015 #5
    Thanks for the responses. I have to leave the house soon and I'm going to be gone all day, and there's just no way I can provide it with the care it needs. I took the advice of a bird rescue website that said put it in a little container with some tissue padding it and tape it to a nearby tree. I taped it to a little stick that was sticking out of the tree, so it's kinda like a miniature Cloud City from star wars. There were lots of birds at the top of the tree, but I could only tape it about 7 feet off the ground. Think the parents will find it? It's too young to make any sounds.
  7. Apr 17, 2015 #6
    You did you best! Good work!
  8. Apr 17, 2015 #7
    Well, it's almost certainly going to die. You should have just left it where you found it if you weren't prepared to care for it IMO - the mother may have found it on the ground.
  9. Apr 17, 2015 #8

    jim hardy

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    keep it warm
    it expects to be fed when it sees motion

    when i was eleven years old we raised a bluejay not much bigger than your little guy. A windstorm blew the nest out of tree and a limb crushed his sibling. Its parents were helpless they could only call from the tree but he was too little to do anything.

    we fed little mr bluejay cottage cheese and hardboiled egg yolks mixed with milk, at first by eyedropper but as he got stronger we'd just dunk a finger in it and poke it down his wide open mouth..
    He thrived and was a delightful pet for a year .
    At that age he started to eye the other jays outside at the feeder, so we began letting him out. He mingled and after a couple weeks joined them.

    I think we fed him too much water in the beginning because his flight feathers came in scraggly and one wing had very few.
    Watching him learn to fly was really amazing - he couldn't fly a straight line because of his unbalanced lift&thrust, so you could see him studying a room as he planned a great circle route to wherever he wanted to go.
    At about six months he got into a jar of multivitamin pills and we were worried he'd OD'd.
    But shortly after that he burst out in beautiful new plumage. His flying improved greatly.

    Blue Jay is a great pet for kids, smart and playful. Like a cat they get in the middle of whatever you're looking at. He loved to steal Monopoly hotels and fly off with them, scattering the money with his propwash. Like mockingbirds they imitate sounds they hear. This one whistled first few bars of "Peter and the Wolf" which he'd picked up from little girl next door's record player, and some other human sounds. We heard him in the yard next couple of winters.

    I wish you luck with your little guy. Feed him a few times an hour so long as anybody is up. l wager he'd make a hit at the office, or kids' school....
  10. Apr 18, 2015 #9
    If I happen to meet any of such a poor cutie, I am sure I am going to have a good supper.
  11. Apr 18, 2015 #10
    Not much you can do with a bird that young, and he/she might not have recovered from human care as you do not know how much time has passed since the last meal and exposure.
    Once out of the nest, survival is nil.
    I don't think any mama/papa bird will adopt him as they have no way of getting him to a safer location or nest.

    For some broods, it is a survival trait - the strongest chick will push the weaker siblings out of the nest, ensuring he gets all the food, instead of the whole brood dying from malnourishment. The wild can be tough and cruel from our perspective, but that is the way it works. At least he knows you tried.
  12. Apr 18, 2015 #11
    I was wondering that. If one did not know the species and the food it eats, would boiled egg be the food of choice.
    Afteral, they still live on a bit of the yolk sac, just after busting out of their egg shell.
  13. Apr 18, 2015 #12
    Well, I just looked at the nest that I made and it's dead. It has ants on it now.
    Can mother birds even pick up baby birds and move them? There's no reason to keep it on the concrete like that crawling around where someone could easily just run it over. It would have just burnt up in the sun.
    Thanks, but I still feel bad. I feel like I could have fed him almond milk, or whatever I had at the time and just kept him in my house.
    I assumed the bird rescue website would know better than me.
    Well, if I ever find another one, I know what not to do.
  14. Apr 18, 2015 #13
    Back in the day it used to be common for people to adopt baby birds that fell, or had been pushed from, a nest. Crows and ravens were particularly sought after because it was believed they were the most intelligent of all birds. I used to have a book of "Projects for Boys," written circa 1890, that included instructions on stealing a baby crow from a nest and raising it as a pet.

    In his famous poem, The Raven, Poe assumes the talking bird that walks into his room through the window is an escaped pet:

    Then the bird said “Nevermore.”

    Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
    “Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters is its only stock and store
    Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster
    Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore—
    Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore
    Of ‘Never—nevermore’.”

    However, this practice is illegal now, and had leroyjenkins succeeded in keeping the baby alive, he could, possibly, have been charged with trying to make a pet out of a wild animal. Here in San Diego you're supposed to turn wounded or infant wild animals over to the official animal rescue people. They either fix it up and release it or euthanize it if it's beyond help.

  15. Apr 18, 2015 #14

    jim hardy

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    Indeed things are getting downright Procrustean.
    With my luck it'd be an ivory billed woodpecker or something .

    I think that they cannot. My bluejay's parents just tried to coax it up into the tree, of course it was helpless.... we watched for a good hour. Poor little guy was shaking from the cold.

    I'd still try to rescue one. If somebody slams you for a kindness, well, shame on them.
    Right after Hurricane Andrew my kids' dog brought in a baby squirrel so little its eyes weren't open. We fed it baby formula with an eyedropper. Took their mind off the destruction and was an entertaining pet. After about six months it too reverted to the trees. I told the kids that was natural, one day they'd grow up and go their own way too, and i'd wish them well when they did. No trauma.

    Good luck sir. Your kindness shows. Thanks.
  16. Apr 18, 2015 #15
    I had to google "procrustean".
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