Fog Blog

Well, for those of you who have visited SOS previously, or those that know something about the work that we do here (and more specifically for those of who are not aware of what we do) - one of our main priorities here at SOS is to give first-aid, care and treatment to many of the sick or wild injured ‘birds of prey’ that are brought into us each year - with the aim of rehabilitating and releasing wherever possible - and this we do in our on-site Raptor Hospital.

This year we had several birds brought into us over the Christmas period - a couple of Barn Owls, a Tawny Owl and two Kestrels - and whilst most of you were at home enjoying the festive celebrations, there were still staff here at SOS administering care to our wild injured friends!

Sadly, we were unable to preserve the Barn Owls as these birds are particularly fragile when it comes to rehabilitation, and despite our best efforts they were so badly injured we were unable to save them.

The Tawny Owl however, was a completely different story and it is currently well on the road to recovery (we know this because he has become very feisty - a typical response - from a creature born in the wild and not used to living in a captive environment).  He or she (both sexes look the same making it rather difficult to tell them apart) is currently resting-up in one of our rehabilitation aviaries ready for its release back into the wild.  Hopefully we will report on the Tawny’s release, when should be in the not-too-distant future!

Likewise, one of the two Kestrels brought into us was also too badly injured to pull through. However the case of the other little wild female Kestrel (pictured above) is an interesting one. We think she too was a victim of the freezing fog that we had just before Christmas: she was brought into us on the 22nd Dec looking very wet and very be-draggled - just to prove, perhaps, that it wasn’t just the JUMBO JETS at Heathrow that were grounded over the Christmas break!

Most raptors (Kestrels being a member of the falcon family) like to bathe each day to keep their feathers in good condition.  We think that she probably took a bath early in the day and then because of the freezing temperatures, was unable to dry herself.  Soaked feathers would have made it impossible for her to fly and therefore catch any food, making her very weak and hungry, and this may well have continued for several days! 

The result was one very ‘sorry-looking’ Kestrel by the time she was finally brought in to us! But thankfully all that was required by this beautiful little bird was some good food and a warm, dry roof over her head. She is doing very well and in the process of getting herself “flying-fit” in another rehab aviary before her release early next week close to where she was found, where she belongs!  What better start to the New Year.

If anyone reading this blog would like to know more about what to do when finding a wild or injured Bird of Prey then click
here for more details

Check out our next blog entry to see what happened.....!