It’s practically a bird hospital around here.

We have another bird in a box.  The first box bird was a few weeks ago.

This one did not hit a window.  I was riding my bike home, two panniers heavily laden with cucumbers, when I overtook a bird limping and flapping along at the edge of the asphalt.

It was a little mourning dove.  Familiar to me; I’m used to seeing a pair of doves at this spot on the road.

She let me pick her up without setting my bike down.  Good thing, because it would be tough to lift up a loaded bike with one hand.

Her wing was almost detached, held on by the skin, with a little break in the skin on the wing, and her underside was bloody on the same side as injured wing and limpy leg.  This bird was hit by a car.

So there I was, a bird in the hand, scorching hot day, heavy bicycle, a kilometer from home.  What to do?

I rode home one handed, with the bird in the other hand.  I sort of displayed her in front of me, somehow hoping that a passing driver would stop and offer assistance.  Is that a bird?  Can I help?

In fact, even the couple that pulled over to take a snapshot of our local pastoral beauty, while I was standing right there on the other shoulder, did not even register the bird in my hand.

The bird sat peacefully folded in my hand the whole way home, facing interestedly into the wind. It must have been similar to flying for her.  Nothing new here.

Once I had to signal a left turn and letting go with either hand was not an option.  Uhh, what do do here?  Gesture with the bird.  No flipping.  That was the only time she wiggled a little, when I waved her out in space to point at my turn.

Phew!  Made it home.  Bird into box.

I was fully expecting her not to make it through the night.  I assumed I had picked her up right after her accident and that she may any minute succumb to internal injuries.

But no, in the morning she was alert, even made a couple bids for escape, although she could not be interested in food.

A friend picked her up to put her on the Hope for Wildlife underground railroad.  That is, connect her to the network of volunteer drivers of injured wildlife.

I don’t expect this bird could be saved with a wing injury that bad, but at least she got to the hospital.

 

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