Saving Young Birds
I am so glad I found this website. I am a teacher
and at the school where I work there are alot of Hoise Sparrow
nests. I found a baby about 3 weeks ago. I thought it was going
to die and since I work in the 5th grade wing I didn't want the
students torturing the animal. I picked it up and kept it, to my
surprise it opened its beak and aloud me to feed it. She is now at
home in a cage and very spoiled, I let her out and she flies around
the house. She eats some seeds I bought for her and still calls me
to feed her. My question is have I reached the point of no return
in the sense that I cannot reintroduce her to her habitat? I tried
releasing her in my back yard and she didn't take to it to well,
she came back down to me. I do not want her to be unhappy. What
should I do?
At this point she has probably imprinted on humans too much to fully return
to the wild. If you choose to keep her, make sure she is getting the proper
nutrition. Obviously you have done very well with her since she has been
able to grow up and mature with you! Other options would be to call zoos or
wildlife centers around your area to see if they would like to use her for
an education animal since she is so tame. I hope this helps, let me know how
it turns out!
This bird may think it is human. It apparently imprinted upon you
during the its "critical imprinting period" as a chick. This is the
critical time a bird identifies its own species and, by the way you
have indicated, it may not have any idea of its own species. The main
clue to support this idea is that it will not fly away and returns to
you, but there is a slight chance that you are just a convenient food
source. If in a few weeks, it does not fly away when outside, you
have a pet that will not be afraid of humans.
I am not sure if a wildlife rescue group in your area will be willing
to take the bird.
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Update: June 2012