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Over the years Gord and I have rescued many little critters from certain death on the highways – turtles (many many from box to snapper), snakes, baby raccoons, skunk (yup even a skunk). But the other day I got a wonderfully uplifting email from a friend about the rescue of a bird in the middle of the lake! by kayak no less! Here is her story and pix the the little guy…

“We noticed a loon behaving a bit wildly and later saw a baby bird swimming away from the loon. We thought it was a baby loon being forced to swim. But the loon abandoned it and the baby kept heading to the middle of the lake. We had binocs and noticed the bird struggling to fly and then stop moving. So Sanda kayaked out and corralled it and ( without tipping) picked it up and tucked it into her life jacket and docked and we wrapped it in a hoodie. We called sanctuary and they said check if it is injured. No. We think the parents flew away when two people were exploring the island. We asked if we should put it back until we told them about the Ospreys on the island. So we a are now driving baby heron to the sanctuary. His wing feathers seem mature but the head is downy. We hope it survives being handled. But it would have drowned, starved, been hit by motor boats or eaten by osprey pretty soon. It was exhausted.Image 2

It turns out it was a green heron, almost full size. They nest in trees. The staff at the sanctuary were a bit baffled about why it was in the lake. They do have a small bit of webbing between two of the four (?) claws on each foot. The internet says they can swim short distances but this one was swimming for about twenty minutes, sometimes paddling with its wings and then sometimes it’s head just sank. I now think Sanda reached it just in time. It kept lurching away so she used the paddle to swing it closer and then reached over and grabbed it. They said it was very stressed so they would leave it alone for an hour and then assess it for injuries. We can call once a week to see how it is doing.

Here he is at the sanctuary. We called today and they said they could find no obvious physical injuries, but will examine him further. They said he is a he. Also nearly full size. They stand 18″ when neck is extended. Much smaller than the grey and great blue.”Image 5

I would say he is a handsome and very lucky little guy – I love his green legs! What a wonderful rescue story…

8 responses »

  1. How fabulous! A lovely story! Nancy

    Sent from Nancy’s iPad


  2. thank you for sharing this story. This is a story of compassion and caring along with another email in this morning’s line up the birth of a baby which is hope. What a wonderful gift for me to read about compassion, caring and hope as I begin today. This is the real Trinity!

    John has gorgeous photos he has taken of green herons. He recognized it immediately. Thanks again for sharing this.

  3. What a great story…Funny little guy.

  4. What a wonderful story! Where was he rescued? Ontario……? What lake?

    Glad to hear that “Twist” was a success ……it is quite close to where we cottage but it was such a beautiful weekend no one wanted to join me….they are not hookers!!!

    Cheers, Holly Sent from my iPad


  5. Awesome.

  6. Jill Vandervelde

    So glad they rescued this beautiful little guy. Well done!

  7. I like happy endings! 🙂 Good job!


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