Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The Lost Racing Pigeon - Found and helped! :)

So, this weekend, I found a lost racing pigeon with a band on its leg, looking weak and just hanging out on the side of my parents' house.

I've always been a little afraid of birds since a chicken scared me once when I was 5, but I have had to help two other birds, so I'm getting over my fear of touching them. Their well-being is more important.

I crumbled up a cracker for it, and gave it a bowl of water, which it didn't seem interested in. I posted photos on Facebook and went on to my friend's house, but then came back to check on it later, and it was still there. My mom's cousin is a nature guy, and he replied to my Facebook post telling me about a man I should call who raises birds and could probably identify it.  So, I called that man, and he asked if I could catch it and bring it to him. That was pretty easy to do because the pigeon didn't move very fast. 

He told me that it was a young bird from the Chicago area, and that AU stands for American Union of Racing Pigeons. Chicago is the club it came from. 2017 is the year it was born and banded, and 8214 is its ID number. He turned it over and showed me its protruding breastbone with no plumpness around it. It also would fall over when it walked. He said it was severely dehydrated and had feather mites. He was going to put something on it's back for that (something like Frontline for birds) to kill all the bugs on it and get it re-hydrated and call the lady in Chicago that he thinks owns it. 

Afterwards, I found this website, which where you can find the owner of the bird if you find a banded one. Mine came Burbank, IL (the man was right about the owner) and was found in Southwest Michigan. 

The website also has a tab that explains how to care for them. It said to give them bird seed or raw grains and a bowl of water at least 1-inch deep because they put their beaks in and suck the water up.  It also said to pour some water into the bowl so they can hear and see it and realize that there's water in there because they might not know because it doesn't look like their usual bowl or water supply. 

I pray every night for children and animals who need help, and ask God to lead me to ones I can help, or to lead them to me, so I think it's Divine Providence that this bird found its way to my parents' house on the day that I visited (although God could have just lead it to a vet or to the man I took it to), but I'm so glad He chose me and I was able to get help for it.☺