Alle alle

December 27, 2009

Our last stop was Hither Hills State Park. Really dead there. Joan decided that she wanted to "take a peak" at the beach. No one else really did, but we followed her there. She walked around a little and then pointed at a small something on the sand near the wave line, halfway between Joan and us. Eileen shouted out, "Dovekie!" Another lifer for me. We all got good looks at it, and I went back to the car for my camera, telling everyone not to scare it off.

Dovekie at Hither Hills State Park

When I returned, they said that bird was injured. Waves had crashed over it and it barely moved. It had no waterproofing to its feathers and was totally bedraggled. I took a few pictures while Eileen called a rehab center. She was told that the center would remain open until 6 and that we should capture the bird and bring it in. The center had already taken in two other Dovekies that day! Incredible.

Dovekie at Hither Hills State Park

Joan slowly approached the bird from the ocean side (cutting off its escape route, and talking to it, I understand), picked it up, wrapped it in a towel, and brought it to the car where we placed it in a container for the ride to the rehab center.

Dovekie at Hither Hills State Park

Clapper Rail, Forsythe (Brigantine) NWR, New Jersey

When we arrived at the center, the Dovekie had perked up quite a bit. The rehabber said that they would put it in fresh water with the other two to see how it responded. We felt good we'd tried to help it and went home.

The rehabber at the center said that they hadn't had much success in the past with Dovekies, but on the following day we found out that all three birds had recovered and were released.

Dovekie at Hither Hills State Park, New York
December 27, 2009

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Copyright 2009 Richard L. Becker