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Baby Birds

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I realise it's not really the time of year to ask this question.  But I was thinking about it and thought it would be a good idea to get as much advice as possible before I need it. 

Last year I found two baby swallows (on seperate occasions).  One had feathers but it was still too young to fly.  The other was a complete baby - no feathers, closed eyes etc.  Both babies were lying on the pavement under the remains of nests which had been knocked down.  The older one was within a yard or so of a very interested cat.   

I completely understand that baby birds should never be removed from where they have been found if it is remotely possible that they might be able to return to their natural home but, in these cases, this was impossible.  So, I took them home, searched the internet for info on how to care for them and found zilch.   I put them in small, open boxes.  Under a lamp.  Changed their kitchen roll nests frequently.  Fed them fishing maggots, any flies etc I could catch and small drops of water with tweezers at hourly intervals.  I kept them on a window sill.  After a few days, the elder one flew away - out of the open window.  I was very pleased indeed.  After about 10 days, the younger one died - I really was very sad as I had begun to believe it might just live.  I had even developed a whistle to which it would respond when I came in to feed it.[:(]  Is there anyone out there who can point me in the direction of proper information on how to care for creatures like this.  Hopefully I will never need it.  Many thanks in advance!

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Well is sounds as though you did the right thing, maybe not the flies, but the maggots are good, as is small pieces of chopped worm. Water should not be given but the food should be dipped in water, this provides ample fluid, especially for a baby bird as they don't drink.

Depending on the species of bird a variable number of chicks die anyway before leaving the nest, with some species this is as high as 50% so it's always a chance that the one that died would have done so anyway.

If you ever want help you can contact me via the website, by e-mail or telephone or even our new wildlife forum from now on.[:D]


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Thanks very much Chris, as always, a font of information!  And thanks for the kind words about the one who died - I have been worried that in my rush to be kind, I might have only prolonged (or even created) it's suffering.  Hopefully, next year they will all stay with their parents where they belong.[:D]

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