Author Topic: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?  (Read 1108 times)

Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« on: June 30, 2014, 11:22:15 am »
It's hiding behind a wheelie bin in a neighbour's (locked) back yard. I can see it through the railings. Its mother keeps coming back to feed it but it is struggling to fly.

There are loads of cats in the neighbourhood. What can I do to help it?

Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2014, 12:26:55 pm »
A cat just got it, despite my efforts to keep them away from it.

 :'( :'( :'(

Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2014, 01:31:26 pm »
(I know I'm talking to myself but) the cat didn't get it. It's still in the neighbour's back yard looking forlorn and bedraggled, with a parent popping to and fro with food. I can't get to it to move it to a place of safety out of the reach of the gazillion cats in the area, so it will have to fend for itself.

Wowbagger

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Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2014, 02:03:29 pm »
I'm afraid you just have to be philosophical about baby birds, especially the common species. Blackbirds usually produce 2 or 3 clutches of eggs each year, sometimes a fourth. Each clutch is 4 or 5 eggs. If the vast majority of them didn't succumb to cats, dogs, rats, sparrow hawks, crows, cars, drowning in water butts and washing up bowls left carelessly in the garden (yes, that one was ours) every year would be like a Hitchcock thriller.

Last year, in Priory Park, I saw a duckling, a few days old, which had become separated from its mother. It carelessly strayed too close to another female mallard, whose own ducklings were rather older. She killed it.
Eating's a serious business. Don't bollocks around wagging your tail.

Vince

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Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2014, 02:08:48 pm »
I would think it is better off where it is with the parent feeding it and the risk of cats than you moving it and it being abandoned by the parent.
216km from Marsh Gibbon

Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2014, 02:12:58 pm »
Thanks, both. I'm leaving it alone.

It makes you want to help when you see the little thing hopping about with its parent calling to it from the roof, and loads of bastard cats slinking by licking their lips! I've been keeping an eye on it every now and then since 9 am and it's survived so far, possibly because Tilley is in our back yard (the cats are afraid of her), so perhaps it will be lucky. It's chosen a back yard with a fence without gaps and places to hide, so the cats can watch but can't get to it (so far).

It is fascinating to watch the parent bird (mother?) nipping off for food and returning to stuff its beak, and forever calling to it to check where it is. S/he is certainly a diligent parent!

Biggsy

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Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2014, 02:17:39 pm »
It's natural that only the strongest survive, but nature is unbearably cruel.  I'm the weakest of two sibblings, so I should be left to die, too!  Meanwhile, I feed disabled pigeons.  I was feeding what first appeared to be a one-legged one on Saturday.  But then it popped its hidden leg back down.  Bloody trickster!  It only had one toe missing after all, and was able to walk quite well.

Regarding cats: BBC Horizon/Open University reckoned that common estimates of animals killed by domestic cats are greatly exaggerated.
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Wowbagger

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Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2014, 02:31:22 pm »
I think both parents feed baby blackbirds. Dad is striking with his very black feathers and banana-yellow beak. Mother is dark brown with a brown beak.

https://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/b/blackbird/ has pictures.
Eating's a serious business. Don't bollocks around wagging your tail.

Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2014, 02:34:40 pm »
It's a male blackbird looking after this fledgling, and he's doing a bloody good job. The baby has managed to flap up onto the top of a pile of wooden planks leaning against the wall, and is gradually edging his/her way upwards.

Re: Fledgling blackbird in difficulties - what can I do?
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2014, 07:09:00 pm »
It's now lying dead outside our back gate, having been got by a cat (I expect). Its parents seem to be still trying to communicate with it.