Birds, Birds Everywhere

Google Maps location for Riverport Veterinary Hospital

Riverport Veterinary Hospital
1 Avoca Street
SA 5214

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08 8555 5690

Victor Central Veterinary Clinic
35 Crozier Road
Victor Harbor
SA 5211

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08 7522 4300

Now I don’t claim to be a bird expert but after a really positive response to a facebook post on this topic I felt a blog was in order to spread the word even further.

Here’s the original post:

Found a baby bird? At this time of year there are certainly plenty around! Particularly magpies.....

If you see a young bird on the side of the road, even if it looks like it may be struggling, the best course of action may not actually be to bring it in to the vet. While we are always happy to help, most of these young birds are simply learning to fly and are under the watchful eye of their parents. They may be on the ground for a reason, so please do not 'rescue' them unless they are in danger. If they are in danger the best approach is to place them gently in a nearby tree. Young birds learn many important life lessons from their parents, such as how to fly, what and how to eat etc. Of course, if a bird is sick or injured please bring it straight in to us for veterinary care.

Our wonderful local wildlife organisations are always available for advice, and of course if you are not sure about the best course of action please give is a call.

Have a good Spring, it's an amazing time of year!!

Aren't I cute?


As it turns out a lot of people had no idea that “helping” baby birds on the side of the road may actually be doing more damage than good (I’m assuming that from the fact that this post was shared many times). Over the Spring period we will have literally hundreds of young birds brought in to us for “treatment”. Here’s the bombshell….often our treatment simply means releasing them in a safe spot close to where they were found (after a thorough checkup of course).

Here’s a great case in point. Just last week a young magpie had wandered on to the road in front of our clinic in Victor Harbor. A well-meaning young man brought him in for us to take care of. Dr Alan revealed his bird watching skills..........

........and spotted mum in the power lines across the road, then proceeded to place the young bird in the block next door. Sure enough, mum flew across the road to resume flight training and all was well.

So I just ignore birds that can’t fly then?

Well no……..this is where it gets tricky. I fully understand that as you drive or walk past a bird on the ground the first instinct will be to help. If at all possible, stop for a minute and check that the bird is ok. If it has it’s head in the air and is looking around the chances are it is fine and you can leave it be or even better place it in a tree nearby until mum comes back. If you do this it would be great to come back to the same area a little while later and make sure it is still ok. If a bird is ever lying on it’s side, bleeding or otherwise distressed or injured please bring it straight in to us or to your local bird carer.

If you are ever unsure about what to do with a bird in our area please phone us or the Wildlife Welfare Organisation….here are the numbers to plug into your phone:

Wildlife Welfare: 0434114628

Riverport Vet Hospital (Goolwa): 85555690

Victor Central Vet Clinic (Victor Harbor): 75224300


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