baby lorikeet release after rehab

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aerhoden
aerhoden's picture
baby lorikeet release after rehab

hello ,I am a vet nurse who does take an interest in the local wild bird (and animal) life in the city clinic where i work esp lorikeets...I often get wild lorikeets handed in , mostly fledglings that crash into windows etc..are concussed and the occaisonal wing or beak injury . We always give the bird a chance to heal . Concussion usually just a few days rest and food , worming and then let them go back in the park where they were found and  they return to their parents. Long term treated wing injuries have once or twice been picked up by a wild life carer , and occaisionally by the person who found the bird. I now have a very young bird with full black beak but all his feathers. He came in a day before a weekend so i took him home with a view to feed and release over the weekend as he had no injuries but inexperience flying. He is quaratined in my upstairs room as i have a pet parrot downstairs. My problem is the weather has been so bad I have not been able to release him now for a week and a half. How long until the parents forget and start a new family.?  If i do as a previous carer says and just let him live outside my house ..will he survive an urban enviroment that is not right near a park?. The local wldlife people dont want any more lorikeets handed to them which is why I have usually been releasing them as soon as possible, I just want to know how long is too long to find their flock? He seems too much like a wild bird to be an inside pet. He is a big healthy baby and has just started to eat the nectar by himself and eat fruit. I have been teaching him to fly(!) for a few minutes each day. I have been careful not to bond with him and treat him like a wild bird. I just need more information on how to release him safely. 

dwatsonbb
dwatsonbb's picture

Probably the parents have already given up hope, and may have moved on, a week and a half is a long time in a birds life. I think once he is feeding for himself, you should allow him to spread his wings in the open, try and make this as close to where you found him as possible, and preferably if there are other Lorikeets about. If you have Lorikeets around your home then this could be acceptable, the flock will either accept or reject him. He may try and stay with you, until he feels safe. By releasing around your home, you can try and observe, to see if he fits in, and maybe recover him if things don't go so well. Definately not for keeping wild birds in captivity, unless the individual is not able to be released due to injury, but then should be humanely euthanised, unless a rarer species, which can participate in a captive breeding program.

We do wildlife rescue, and birds such as you are describing, would spend time at a sanctuary in a large aviary with the same species, and depending on how they cope, would be released at the earliest time possible.

What does the vet in your practice think?

Good luck and thanks for caring.

Dale Huonville, Tasmania

aerhoden
aerhoden's picture

Thanks for replying , The vet is really only concerned with their injuries etc.He is a great vet but is a true scientist rather than behavourist. He has no real knowledge of bird behaviour esp in the wild . It has been an interest of mine that I have encouraged here in the practice.

My problem in releasing around the home is that it is urban inner city , not many trees  I only have a small courtyard,and a rooftop terrace the only real birds i see are sparrows and a pair of doves who seem to live on my fence .  I'm willling to sit in the park for a day to see if he is accepted .Would this work ?. He is flying around the room  but he s not very good , kind of crash lands but is getting more confident every day.  Ill give the park a go on the weekend if we have good weather.. and i agree re wild birds as pets which is why im keen to release him.

dwatsonbb
dwatsonbb's picture

Sounds like the park will be the best option, unfortunately if you let him go, you may not be able to re catch him, if he does not take off, from experience, only birds that are truly sick or injured can be caught easily. If he gets a bit of a flight going, then it will be almost impossible to catch. Time will tell. He may find it difficult to fly confidently in a confined space, may be frightened to run into things. I guess you need to take a chance.

I live by the motto, that "we do everything we possibly can" and sometimes these things don't go the way we want them to. At the end of the day, hold your head high knowing that you have given it a really good chance of surviving, and most of all learn from your experience.

Please let us know how you go?

Dale Huonville, Tasmania

Woko
Woko's picture

Aerhoden, I wouldn't be too worried about releasing the lorikeet in an urban area. Lorikeets fly all over the place looking for food & an urban area is simply a place to be crossed to the next patch of flowering native plants.

aerhoden
aerhoden's picture

Well I stalled due to constant bad weather and the fact he seemed so young but today I decided to do it and the most amazing thing happened .. I took him to the park I had decided on ( lots of lorikeets ) he thrashed about a bit in the car . Called out from the cage .. Then we sat on the grass for a bit .. He was quiet , I opened the cage .. He sat there then walked over to me , licked me , I tickled him and then he took off flew in huge wide circles higher and higher then flew across and landed in a bare tree .. Then two lorikeets flew over and sat with him for about 5 minutes then they flew around the park together doing swoops. I watched them for ages. It was like they knew him

dwatsonbb
dwatsonbb's picture

Beautiful moments, thanks for letting us know how it went, when you did not reply for a while, I was thinking the worst. Must be very rewarding for you. Thanks again for caring and sharing your story. Sounds like your little Lorikeet is going to do just fine.

Dale Huonville, Tasmania

Araminta
Araminta's picture

I only saw this post now, what a great story. What a success. Congratulations aerhoden. Restores my trust in humanity. Thanks so much for caringheart

M-L

Araminta
Araminta's picture

I do have a question you might be able to answer.

I have some horrible neighbours that do a lot of damage to the evironment, have a dog that drags one leg behind and is riddled with Arthritis, keep two pigs in a very small enclosure. Just telling you this, so you get the picture of what kind of people they are.

Last week I noticed an empty bird cage outside, since yesterday there is a Galah in it. I do not trust those people. I'm almost sure this is a wild bird? (not 100% though). I googled if you need a licence to keep wild birds, but to my surprize discovered, the law doesn't seem to care about Galahs, but you can't catch them from the wild.

Any thoughts on that? Or is my information wrong. I would like to hope so??

Here is what I found on the net:

 Can you keep Galahs as pets? Yes.

Galahs make excellent pets. But as they are a very social bird that require lots of attention or they will quickly become bored, dull and depression may set in. They also require suitable housing in a largish aviary or are given an opportunity to fly around the house, so they can get plenty of exercise. A fresh supply of food and water should be provided every day to keep your bird healthy.

You currently do not, need a license to keep a Galah as a pet in Australia.

 .

Are you allowed to catch Galahs from the wild.? No. This is illegal under Australian federal law.

So, if I would try to find out if the Galah was caught from the wild, how would I go about it? Who would I ring? Would these people have to produce a receipt from a pet shop?

Can you help??

M-L

dwatsonbb
dwatsonbb's picture

Hi M-L, can't answer with any reliability, but most Galahs I have seen in pet shops from reputable breeders should have a leg band, which identifies who the breeder is. This applies to many bird species, but i think is a voluntary system. The problem is people buy birds, subsequently breed them, and are not reputable or registered with any club or society, and therefore will not fit leg bands. Not sure there is anything you can do.

Dale Huonville, Tasmania

Araminta
Araminta's picture

Thanks Dale, I'm almost certain they caught it, but I won't be able to prove it. They are also feeding Kings , if I see one of them in their cage , I'll go nuts. You know how trusting they arecrying

M-L

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