"Rosie" ready for her first treatment (Click to
story of "Rosie", the Peregrine
this is a rather sad story from the bird's point of view, the fastest
being on earth condemned to live the life of a "grasshopper"
until the end of its days. But it was Rosie's strong will to live
that made me rehabilitate her. When she came to my facility Rosie and I had a
long "talk" and together we decided to go for it. I must mention Diana
Siderides' (Flight to Freedom) advice and
encouragement. I sent her photos of the bird when it had arrived and she
said she thought everything would turn out well - thank you, Diana! (Read
about Diana's life as a rehabilitator in her recently published book. Order
your copy at the above URL and help Diana to keep up her good work for
I visited a rehab center last year, I saw
a beautiful female Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus peregrinus) in a
small flight cage. I was told that the bird had come from the wild and
must have hit a wire and hurt her wing. She had been treated at the
Veterinary University of Vienna and was at the rehab to be released after
flight training as no bones were broken. Yet, she would not use her wing
for some reason. She kept it stretched from her and just climbed up and
down the branches of her cage.
later I asked how the Peregrine was doing: SHOCK! They had had to
amputate her wing as she had started gnawing at it. She had been
intended to be "used" for captive propagation, but with just
one wing left nobody wanted her any more. I decided to take her "home"
and they gave the bird to me willingly. I fetched her on the 7th of January
2000. SHOCK number two: Rosie had not yet realised she would never fly
again and tried and tried and had fallen onto her beak so often, that
almost half of the upper mandible was destroyed. Her cere was grey
and so were her talons, claws much too long and sharp, she was dirty and
had a bad smell. But fortunately we have changed all that together -
look at the picture-story below!
To see Rosie's specially designed cage
to enlarge the photos. Use the BACK-button of your browser to return!
2 and 3: The
beak from the front and the side - the upper mandible dirty,
infected, with the
bleeding bone visible. Notice the colour of the cere
and the lores (round the eye) - should be yellow with an adult
4 and 5: To avoid self-puncturing I
always have the birds grip some leather during inspection. To
calm her down Rosie is hooded.
The beak is cleaned and a mild healing desinfectant is used.
8 and 9: "Rosie"
after almost eight months at my facility - together we have made a new beak for her: She grew it and I gave it the