I heard a thump on my window Saturday evening and knew immediately that a bird had hit the glass. Outside I found this yellow-throated chat lying in the leaves. One study says that one out of two glass strikes will be fatal to the bird but this little guy seemed okay, just stunned. I picked him up and kept him safe for about 30 minutes. He hopped onto the edge of the box I was using to contain him, looked back at me, and flew off! It was truly an amazing experience to hold this bird and help him.
If a bird collides with your window, examine it for obvious injuries (like a broken wing). They are generally very calm about being carefully handled. Place the bird in a shoebox or other container, preferably with a lid. Keep the bird safe from cats and predators and off the ground where ants might get it. Every 10-15 minutes give the bird the opportunity to fly away. Usually a stunned bird with no injuries will recover in about 30-45 minutes. If the bird doesn't recover or has obvious injuries, call Rockport/Fulton Wings Rescue Center dispatcher Rachel Diaz, 361-229-5484.
Birds collide with windows for many reasons but some are avoidable. If you have large expanses of plate glass windows, keep feeders away from them. Put decals or sun catchers on the windows or keep your blind slats half open. For extreme cases you might even put netting up that is taut enough for the birds to bounce off safely.
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Roving Reporter | "A Bird in the Hand" | 2 Photos and Article by Jeanette Larson
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