Monday, 23 April 2012

Saving a Predatory Life

Below is an amazing story about a recent rescue by Animal Alliance board member and Born Free USA's Canadian Representative, Barry MacKay.




by Barry Kent MacKay,
Senior Program Associate

Born Free USA's Canadian Representative 


Death, Life and a Hawk Named Eve 


Saving a Predatory Life

Published 04/20/12

When I first saw Eve, in mid-March, I thought I should probably kill her. It would be easier than having to do it later on, after I had come to know her. Twenty minutes earlier a gentleman had called to say he had just picked up a “peregrine falcon” lying on its back on the 9th Line, the rather heavily travelled north-south road just a short distance from my home. Since I walk or drive the 9th Line almost daily, I knew there were red-tailed hawks in the neighborhood. He had heard of my work with birds and asked if I would take the bird. I told him to bring it over.

When I opened the box, there was a year-old red-tailed hawk, on her feet, but with her head grotesquely twisted down under her belly. I picked her up. She tried and failed to focus on what was happening, but couldn’t manage to control her head movements. There were drops of blood on her ear covets, but I could find no broken bones. Her neurological symptoms were consistent with a concussion derived from a collision with a car. Red-tailed hawks fly down from high perches, entirely concentrated on their prey, and too often swoop low across roads and are struck by vehicles. Brain damage can be permanent, and if so, euthanasia would become the most humane option. It’s harder to do, though, once one has gotten to know the bird. On the other hand, didn’t she deserve a chance?   Read more...

No comments: