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Was at the barn on Sunday and came across a little finch rolling around the ground. When I picked it up- noticed that it only had 1 wing. Where the left wing should have been was a small piece of flesh with 2 wing feathers attached. No wounds, no bones, just two wing feathers. Looks like a juvenile, but couldn't figure out how it could have survived if born like this, or how it could have healed if it was an earlier injury. Has anyone ever seen or heard of a bird born with only 1 wing? Poor little thing. It was so stressed when I brought it home it would just flap its one wing falling over on the wingless side where it couldn't get itself up, and just kept bashing itself in to the side of the cage. I clipped back the feathers on the good wing, and today it seems to be adjusting better and has managed to perch itself in the cage. It is eating and drinking and I am hoping it can be tamed so it can be happy as a pet rather than having to euthanize it since it would not be able to survive in the wild.
Juvenile House Sparrow. I'd guess it was hatched with a congenital deformation, and survived to the normal fledging time because its parents cared for it in the nest. But once fledged, as you say its survival in the wild is impossible.
Remember to give it some protein-rich food (e.g. chopped mealworms) as well as birdseed, particularly now while it is still young.
Little finch is doing great. I set up a sort of handicapped cage with little stick perches set up as a ladder up 2 sides of the cage. He hops from branch to branch and seems to be adjusting well. Loves his seed and meal worms!!
That is definitely one lucky little bird. Kat, if you have any trouble, you could check in with the Raptor Trust in the Great Swamp (just south of Morristown off of 287). It is one of the top wild bird rehabilitation centers in the U.S. I've taken several birds that I've found over there (most of them hit by cars). This is their website, if you aren't already familiar with them: http://theraptortrust.org.
my sister has one that has lived happily in a cage for the last five years. it has a bill deformity among other problems so cannot be released.
it loves to be hand fed fruit, insects, etc. and also loves to be held, but only by my sister. also loves a daily bath.
This one's not crazy about being held, still very scared, but I'm working on it hoping it will eventually get at least somewhat tame. Otherwise doing great. Loves to eat- really loved its mealworms. Seems happy. But still freaks out when I put my hand in the cage and falls off the perch!!
my sister also feeds hers a variety of fresh fruit in season as well as cooked oatmeal, really whatever they are eating.
keep a watch on the bill and it wouldn't hurt to put a cuddle bone in the cage. caged bird's beaks often don't get worn down properly and need to be trimmed once in a while. (by a professional)
i talked to my sister yesterday and she said to feed as varied a diet as possible and also to have different sizes (diameters) of perches. i can see in your photo that the tip of the bill may be getting a little long so do keep an eye on that. her bird was found when the eyes were still shut (the size of a baby mouse) so she imprinted with my sister from the beginning.
here is a picture of Lucky when she was young (note the yellow around the mouth) and one taken more recently. she's almost 5 yrs. old now.
she said you can google what NOT to feed them. she mentioned no avocado.
Lucky goes crazy when my sister swats a housefly and puts it in the cage...loves them! lol
Thanks for the advice. Wish mine was younger so it would have imprinted as well, but this one's still really wild.(I've hand reared a bunch of wild baby birds for release and some of them get so imprinted that its tough to get them rehabbed for life back in the wild!) Whenever I go into the cage this one still freaks out and falls off the perch and flounders around on the floor of the cage. I've been trying to pick it up and hold it everyday, hoping it will become tame but no such luck. It will sit calmly cuddled in the cup of my hand but as soon as it gets the chance it tries to escape, and falls over when it tries to fly (refuses to perch on a finger). I was even having a hard time taking a picture of it in the cage because it was really freaked out by the camera, and still tries to bite whenever I pick it up.Some of the older birds I've gotten in (injured) die of the stress of captivity alone, so I'm kind of surprised this one is doing as well as it is despite its fear. I'll try giving it a cuddle bone and/or start trimming back the beak, and varying the diet a bit more. Its already got different sizes of perches and does well with the perches in the cage. Another rehabber I worked with recommended keeping wild birds in a cat carrier rather than a birdcage to protect the feathers from injury, but if this one is gonna remain in captivity and is not able to fly I think its more important for it to have an open cage to get used to human noises and contact. The wire birdcage also makes it easier to set up the various perches and all for the bird.
i think that's wise. a cat carrier would be too bleak a life.
lucky's cage is in the breakfast room and when they have company, no one really goes in there. she only likes my sister, my sister's dog, the cleaning lady and me (i think i sound like my sister). she's not crazy about my sister's husband. lol
maybe you'll just have to be content not to hold her except when clipping toenails or the beak.
my sister has an identical cage (every single perch the same and everything else in it too) for when it's times to wash out the other cage. she goes nuts if she's put in anything else and my sister can't even introduce a new anything now.
Sorry- haven't been on in a while. Little bird's still doing good. I pretty much leave it alone except to give it food and water, Its hanging out in my back room with a Senegal parrot, 25 yr old red eared slider, and some coy fish, so at least its got some company!!
my sister recently went up to michigan to close her house for the winter and found a skin & bones toad in the basement. it was too late in the season to turn him loose outside (too cold and undernourished) so she bought crickets, meal worms and a toad abode and brought him back to missouri. he's doing well and she'll return him to michigan in the spring.