Rescue Advice Baby Birds

The best thing to do, if you come across an abandoned nest or baby, is not to act at all for a while, unless it is an obvious situation like a young baby fallen out the nest and you can pick the baby up gently and put it back using a cloth to keep the human smell off the bird/animal. Otherwise, keep your distance and watch. Perhaps the parents are away catching food and will return. Perhaps the baby has just fledged (the natural time for the baby to leave the nest, but will still be cared for by its parents.  The parents may be sitting just out of sight in a tree). If after 2 hours, the parents have not returned, it is likely that they are not coming back, and then a decision can be made to either remove the babies or let nature take its course.

If you take the chick away, take a cardboard box, puncture holes around the top and line it with a dry towel. Wrap a hotwater bottle in another towel and place it on the side of the box. Remember that young chicks that are not fully feathered, cannot retain their body temperature, so even if you feel it is quite warm, they do need extra warmth to survive until you can get them to a rehab centre. Use tissue paper to create a little hollow next to the hotwater bottle and place the chick in the hollowed out area. Make sure that the chick can move away from the hotwater bottle if it gets too hot. Cover the box with another dry towel to prevent the bird jumping out of the box. Do not attempt to give the chick any water or food. It can survive longer than you think without food, provided it has warmth. In most instances, trying to feed with a dropper or spoon will result in the bird inhaling food into its lung which will ultimately lead to its death. Take it to a rehabilitation centre as soon as you can.

Please do not try to raise the baby yourself. Hand-raised chicks require the correct diet and contrary to popular belief, Pronutro and Baby Cereal is not suitable for all chicks and could lead to serious nutrient deficiency.