This Week at Liberty April 16, 2012

Hoots, Howls, and Hollers

Listen up everyone.  I realize that the IRS is in direct competition to us today, but here’s a great opportunity for you to help…even if just a little bit.  It takes only a few minutes of your time, and it goes one hundred percent to a truly great cause…..Liberty Wildlife’s Orphan Care Program.

Let me take you back a bit….remember when you found that baby bird, all featherless, eyes closed to the world, having just fought its way out of an egg or that little bunny adrift from its mom….And, now it finds itself slowly cooking on the hot pavement…no fault of its own, trying desperately to find safety and cover.  Then you happen along and being the kind, compassionate person that you are you go into panic mode trying to decide what to do.  You can’t just turn your head and walk away…no way.  What do you do?  You cradle the baby in a tissue box, a plastic butter container or an old straw cowboy hat that has blown into your yard (time to get rid of that anyway…).  You rush to the phone and call the Liberty Wildlife Hotline.  They have always been there to help you in the past……and yes, they are still there, still answering the calls of the wild, still willing to help you and the orphan out.

OK, keep  remembering that incident that has happened many times.  In your case your cat might have been the culprit, or your plate glass window or the utility poles behind your house or a lawn mower run amok….whatever it was that made you need our help….we were there to assist you.

Now it is your turn to assist us.  Groupon, the Deal of the Day, has a truly generous offer.  They are honoring organizations during Earth Week and Liberty Wildlife has been selected to participate in this Grassroots Campaign.

It is so easy for you to pay back or perhaps even pay forward if you haven’t needed us yet (you probably will).  Starting Monday morning and going all week long, you can go to your computer, log into and generously give to our orphan care program.  You can take a little more time to read about us if you don’t know us already.  Learn about our shopping list full of mealworms, crickets, mice, rats, dog and cat food and our need of brooders and medical supplies….all so that you can confidently bring your inadvertent orphans to us.

We would greatly thank you and so would the thousands of babies that we care for and release every year.  Make this campaign as amazingly successful as the boldness of Groupon to present this opportunity to ALL of you for us.  Watch as the tipping point is surpassed by your generosity.  I intend to participate first thing….join me right now and then forward this to your friends far and wide. You don’t have to be local to participate!

And, one more thing….it is time for you to send in your reservations for seats or even a table at this year’s Wishes for Wildlife.   It will be splendid.  Held May 5th at the Montelucia in Paradise Valley, the auction will offer many, many items and opportunities, a store will allow you to purchase outright and our new electronic bidding will make vying for prizes downright fun….the food and program will be memorable…trust me! More to come………….

This Week at Liberty

Post by Terry Stevens

The intake total for this year now stands at 446.

Lots of times I have to work to get enough photos to populate TW@L, but this week I had to work to cull the available shots. A lot of things took place (WNV inoculations, cute babies arriving, eagle banding, etc.) and thanks to some help in the photo department, they were all covered.  Let’s get started…

The annual WNV prevention day (Photo by Susie Vaught)

Each year, we inoculate all of our permanent resident birds against West Nile Virus. The injections are accomplished in an assembly line type operation so no bird is missed. The serum is not cheap but fortunately we have a supplier (Meriel) who donates enough for our use. This hopefully will keep all of our education birds free from possible infection from the disease.


Carol orients new volunteers

In preparing for the onslaught that is spring and “baby bird season” Carol Suits is recruiting a host of new volunteers for OC, Rescue and Transport, and the Hotline.  Last Saturday an orientation for all new volunteers, plus a training class for R&T newbies and a session to train Hotliners were all accomplished under threatening skies. Welcome all new volunteers!


Feeding baby roadrunner

The first minute of life - Welcome to the world! (Photo by Lesley Guenther)

All dried off and clean. (Photo by Susie Vaught)

In addition to several orphan GHO’s who seem to arrive daily, we are currently caring for a baby road runner and another baby RTH who emerged from the last egg we had in one of our incubators. All current babies appear to be doing fine so far, and the care continues…

Bobcat kitten (Photo by Susie Vaught)

Jan feeds the kitty (Photo by Susie Vaught)

People are always surprised to learn Liberty doesn’t just provide care for birds. Any native Arizona animal that requires assistance will receive it, including this tiny baby bobcat that was separated from it’s mother. After a day of triage and stabilization, the kitten was transferred to SWW for continuing care and disposition.


A touching note from a young boy (Photo by Susie Vaught)

For those who lament the condition of the youth of today, take heart. This note from a young boy was left on a box containing a small injured bird. He wanted to make sure his “rescue” got the best care possible and even suggested a name for the bird. As long as the kids show they care about others in general and wildlife in particular, there is hope for the future. Thank you, Jacob, for caring.


Nest tree

The ascent begins

Mom watches closely from above

Joe's wire structure is revealed (Photo by Joe Miller)

Intruder alert!

Playing "Twister" in the nest

Hoods and booties are in place

Precious cargo descends

The chicks are the centers of attention (Photo by Joe Miller)

One chick takes a short nap (Photo by Joe Miller)

What're YOU lookin' at?

Jan helps Tuck with the chicks

Joe and one of the chicks he helped to save

Going back home

Kyle places one of the chicks back in the nest

Mom and dad patrol overhead - and then return to their kids

Two years ago, the eagles at a nest on a reservation north of town hatched three chicks.  Within a few weeks, the volunteers for the Nest Watch program realized the little birds were in trouble and they were captured and brought to Liberty for evaluation and treatment.  It was found they were all suffering from a toxin from a rare form of tick that inhabited the tree in which the nest was located. Sadly, all three chicks died. The tree was treated to eliminate the ticks and last year, again three chicks hatched.  Once again, difficulties arose and the three babies were brought to Liberty. The ticks had returned. One of the birds recovered, two did not.  The decision was made to destroy the tree altogether and build a new platform nest in a neighboring tree.  Joe Miller, along with agents of AG&F constructed a nest of sticks and wire and installed it in the new tree – and then waited. The parents returned this spring, accepted the new nest, and again laid three eggs, two of which hatched and produced healthy, tick-free chicks! Last week, the two little(?) birds were banded in the nest by Kyle and Tuck from AG&F, with the help of Joe, Jan, and some local tribal officials. It looks like the tick invasion has been ended.  Nice work, Joe!

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8 Responses to This Week at Liberty April 16, 2012

  1. Carol says:

    Great pictures of the banding and all the babies! Thank goodness for the Groupon opportunity and the Wishes for Wildlife Benefit that’s fast approaching, May 5th. Kids are always expensive and the Liberty kids are no exception!

  2. Andrea Sobotka says:

    VERY cool field photos! Jacobs note made me cry :-)

  3. Art Smith says:

    Great story of perseverance and dedication. Thank you Joe, Jan et al for your years of dedicated service that make outcomes like this possible. I appreciate you………Art

  4. Megan Mosby says:

    Great work to all of you in every aspect of the work done…love the new volunteers, love the hatching babies, love the team work to make a tick free nest! I might be prejudiced, but I think this is one heck of an organization…

  5. Balinda says:

    Andrea, I’m with you…Jacob’s note was precious. If the baby is rehabilitated, can we contact Jacob with the good news about “Love”?
    And Jan, I bet it took everything you had not to kiss that precious eagle on the head!

  6. Kristine Williams says:

    Amazing work for all involved. Wow, what a great nest and wonderful result.

  7. Penny Metcalfe Lowry says:

    Thank You for keeping me on the email list. I feel so lucky to have been a volunteer since 2004 (right now I’m retired taking care of 2 grandaughters) I share this info at Zoe’s school and anyone who will listen. this is my Fortune to see the pics of Jacobs letter , Jan and Joe and the Eagles struggle, etc I’ve spoke to many hunters about lead free shot and the story of 248 & I just thank You. Penny

  8. Donna Jabara says:

    What an awesome blog this week! The pictures were superb, especially the eagle-banding. The picture of the sleeping baby redtail(?) was too precious for words. Great job baby-sitters, AZ Game & Fish, eagle nest watchers.

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