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 Animals  Belize Project #23359

Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running

by Belize Bird Rescue
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Help keep Belize Bird Rescue up and running
Dr Duane & Angie with the barn owl
Dr Duane & Angie with the barn owl

Dear all,

This last quarter has seen 39 great releases including 21 parrots, 3 red-foot boobies, 2 pelis, 4 raptors and 6 ‘garden’ birds.

We took in 43 patients, including 10 songbirds, 9 waterbirds, 7 raptors and 10 parrots, and as of today after our latest bout of releases we have ‘only’ 147 birds at the Centre undergoing rehabilitation. This is the lowest number I can remember for a good few years, which is testament to the success of the parrot rehabilitation programme and the Forest Department’s work with the licensing and enforcement programmes. Not to mention the public’s response to our plea not to take parrots from the wild. It hasn’t diminished our feed bill, however, as we are still feeding all of our releases – there are probably 40 parrots that now come in daily for feeding while they find their way around the territory. They are a noisy bunch, that’s for sure!

Our interns and volunteers right now include the wonderful Dr Duane Tom who is enjoying the slower pace of life from his usual hectic schedule of wildlife intakes at the California rescue. Plus the lovely Angela who is interning here for 3 months from Germany. They make a great team, but sadly Dr Tom leaves tomorrow and Angela will be gone before Christmas. I have certainly enjoyed the expert and consistent assistance and will miss them like crazy.

This may be a good opportunity for us to remind you of Giving Tuesday which is always a big day for us on Global Giving. I know the tax regime is not as kind to donors as it was in the past, but if you have a tax-deductible donation or a corporate matching contribution you would like to send our way, then please keep the 3rd of December in mind as there will be lots of double-up dollars and bonus dollars available through GG.

Thank you as always for your incredible and unwavering generosity and support. I am slowly getting to meet some of you through your visits to Rock Farm Guest House, and really hope to meet many, many more of you as the years go on. It’s a fabulous way to support us and you get a Belize Birdy holiday in exchange for your donation.

Thank you once again for your loyalty and encouragement. You’re always amazingly generous, and we simply couldn’t do what we do without you!

Warm regards,

Nikki & the BBR Team

Releasing the red foot boobies
Releasing the red foot boobies
Released red loreds
Released red loreds
Dr Duane checking eyes of the red lored
Dr Duane checking eyes of the red lored
One of the permanent resident red loreds
One of the permanent resident red loreds
Touca - our wonky keel-billed toucan
Touca - our wonky keel-billed toucan
Working on the barn owl
Working on the barn owl

Links:

Yellow-heads released (Credit Dr Sophie)
Yellow-heads released (Credit Dr Sophie)

Dear all,

We are delighted to report that the end of May saw the successful release of last year’s hand-reared yellow- headed chicks. The lovely Dr Sophie accompanied these 28 birds to the National Park in the south of the country where they were finally able to fly free after 12 months of growing up. This brings our grand total of released yellow-heads to 102: more than 8% of the total global population! (and thank you Dr Sophie for the fabulous photos of them being released)

We carried out a total of 87 releases between May and July including (amongst others) 11 olive-throated parakeets, 18 red loreds, 9 owls, 4 woodpeckers, one of our baby red-foot boobies and our globe-trotting royal tern. Of our 126 intakes, 27 were released, 7 were transferred and 59 are moving through the programme. If you do the maths, you’ll see why this is our most loved and our most loathed time of year. While success stories abound, there are also many mortalities, particularly amongst the passerines (songbirds). Nature can be very cruel indeed.

As of the end of July 2019 we have 170 birds undergoing rehabilitation. One of our favourite stories for this quarter is that Bella finally has a boyfriend. Bella is our resident Blue & Gold macaw. She was captive bred for the USA pet trade, and hand-raised by humans. She’s very bonded to people and we didn’t think she would ever find a soul mate in a parrot, but along came Kat the Catalina – a huge male hybrid that we figure escaped from across the border and was flying free in northern Belize for several months. Thank goodness he was safely captured as there was definitely an effort in several of the villages he frequented to bring him down and cage him for sale. That would not have been a good outcome for him. Now he and Bella occupy one of our larger enclosures and seem to be quite content with one another. The start of something wonderful...?

We also received 16 baby white-fronts this year. They are quite possibly one of the cutest species on the planet. Sadly two of them have clipped feathers, so their recuperation will be more than 2 years, however, they are babies and it will give them time to mature and bond with their fellow rehab candidates.

A huge shout-out and thanks as always to our interns. We have just bidden farewell to the wonderful skill and company of Dr Gemma. This was her 3rd trip now to BBR, and we hope not her last. We’ve had some fabulous rehab interns throughout the season and hope to welcome more as the year goes on.

And of course, thank YOU, our donors. You know we can’t do it without you!!

By the way, you may like to watch our Facebook page for the latest rehab news, and we just advertised our new batch of ultra-soft t-shirts for sale. Put your order in quick as supplies are limited and thank you to those who have already purchased. It's a great way to support and to actually get something back other than our usual love and gratitude!

Thank you all once again for your loyal support. You’re amazing!

Nikki & the BBR Team

Released yellow-heads in trees (credit Dr Sophie)
Released yellow-heads in trees (credit Dr Sophie)
Bella & Kat
Bella & Kat
One of the white-front babies
One of the white-front babies
Released red loreds at BBR
Released red loreds at BBR
Begging baby red lored
Begging baby red lored
Dr Gemma and Evelyn (yes, that
Dr Gemma and Evelyn (yes, that's not a bird!)
Ariane feeding this year
Ariane feeding this year's yellowhead babies
Gorgeous red lored
Gorgeous red lored

Links:

Dyna
Dyna

Greetings from Belize,

A few good news updates since our last monthly report. The red lored whose eye was destroyed by a pellet or sling shot was finally released last week. It’s a difficult call to make to release a one-eyed bird of any species, but parrots have an advantage of living in a strong social structure so we hope that will compensate for his half-vision when it comes to predator awareness. He was extremely agitated in a captive situation, and birds like him are almost impossible to habituate, so we felt it only fair to give him a chance to be free again rather than condemn him to life in a cage.

We also had a visitor to one of our feeders: an un-banded white-front with a large chunk of her beak missing. She was skinny and quite desperate. She allowed herself to be caught (although now she’s stronger I bet she regrets that decision) and has been eating smoothies like there’s no tomorrow. No band means she’s either wild-born or an escaped pet. Whatever she is she encountered something strong and aggressive to have chewed up her beak like that. Oscar said it looked as if her face had been remodeled with a stick of dynamite – so that’s her name! Dyna continues to thrive and hates us for keeping her captive, but without a beak she wouldn’t last long outside.

We had a couple of fast turn-arounds which we always enjoy. One was a purple gallinule that we picked up from Orange walk. He had mild head trauma and was found wandering in the middle of the town. After first-class room and board he was released fitter and fatter a couple of weeks later. We were called out to check on a bat falcon hit by a bus in Biscayne Village. He was stunned for a few hours, but otherwise uninjured. We took the risk of releasing on site that afternoon and thankfully it worked out perfectly. We’ve also had the usual flurry of migrants heading back north that have encountered windows or vehicles along the way. We humans don’t make their difficult journey any easier, that’s for sure.

We anticipate releasing a royal tern soon, who has been with us for far too long already. He was banded in Hampton Beach, Virginia USA 7 months ago, and flew 1500 miles to Belize. Somewhere along the way he injured his food and become debilitated by parasites. He was very lucky the caring folks of The Bliss Centre in Belize City put him in a box and called on our assistance for him.

And finally, just yesterday we received 3 yellow-headed amazon chicks – our first of the season. It always breaks my heart to think of the parents returning to empty nest, but as the team in the field keep reminding me, better that we take them than the poachers. It’s still awful knowing that the parents have invested so much physical and mental resources into raising them to this 7 or 8 week stage only to return to an empty nest. I can’t imagine their heartbreak.

Thank you so much as always for your generosity and support. You make it all possible!!

Gallinule
Gallinule
Gallinule release
Gallinule release
Royal Tern
Royal Tern

Links:

Wild baby white front brought
Wild baby white front brought 'home' for dinner

2018 was a record year for our little rescue, in many ways.

We saw more intakes than ever with 309 cases, 93 of which were released during the same year. 108 of them are still undergoing rehabilitation, with 35 transferred to other facilities or to authorized carers. Amongst the intakes were 119 parrots, 60 raptors, 29 water-birds and 73 passerines, toucans and woodpeckers. Of those 309 cases, the general public generated 150 of the rescues from their reports, and the Forest Department and other organisations generated another 93 birds.

Our releases throughout the year included 92 parrots and 39 owls! Of the 166 birds still undergoing rehabilitation, all but 12 of them are parrots.

Our 2018 expenditure was slightly higher than usual at around $85,000US, but that’s to be expected with the increase in cases, however with our Annual in-country fundraiser, the support of the wonderful GlobalGiving donors, and financial and operational support from Rock Farm Guest House, our income was also a considerably more than usual. We also had much more in-kind support in the form of vets and interns than we have even had before. We received 168 days of veterinary care from 4 vets, and 770 days of intern assistance from 18 wonderful people from around the world.

We are delighted to say that our parrot rehab programme is growing and growing, and the ‘wild’ flocks around BBR are growing too! Many of them brought back babies this year, and the off-site releases of endangered yellow-heads were the fastest and most successful yet.

This coming April we will be sending 27 hand-reared yellow-head babies back to the wild, and we cannot wait to see this fabulous flock of youngsters flying free where they truly belong.

Once again, we could not do what we do without the financial and moral support of our GlobalGiving Community. We can never find the ways to thank you enough, certainly not with words along, but maybe if you go to our Facebook page or website and see the photos and videos of the birds you have helped us to heal and to grow and find their way to freedom, then you will know that every single dollar counts and it IS worth it and we simply couldn’t do what we do with you, the donor.

Thank you - from the bottom of every feathery little heart at BBR.

Nikki & the BBR Team

Three pionus taking a rain bath
Three pionus taking a rain bath
Pre-release farewell to whistling duck baby
Pre-release farewell to whistling duck baby
Education programme - thank you Anabela!
Education programme - thank you Anabela!
It
It's all about the release!
Released white-front up close
Released white-front up close

Links:

Toto the red lored
Toto the red lored

Dear all

This quarter has been a lot quieter than the crazy baby season (just as it should be!) with only 40 intakes

We took in a couple of escapees, which tends to happen this time of year. Pepperoni, a red lored, flew into a school and attacked the kids and stole their pizza. He’s going to be a handful to rehabilitate: he’s already teaching everyone in the red lored enclosure to sing and whistle, as if they needed any more encouragement. He is the naughtiest of 3 red loreds we received that were quite clearly ex-captive escapees.

Another red lored was brought to us very close to death with an environment-related respiratory infection. After 3-yr old Tito suffered his third and most severe attack, his owners asked us to take him on. Lucky he was a fighter and eventually pulled through. He’s a great release candidate and has already made friends in the red lored aviary.

This week we are overjoyed to welcome back Dr Gemma and Dr Sophie for a short spell at BBR. As I type they are going through our 179 current cases: checking, medicating, releasing, taking notes, doing their vet stuff! It’s wonderful to have them back.

We also welcomed back Anabela, a primary school teacher from Canada. She volunteered with us for 2 months earlier in the year and decided to return for another two months in order to bring her humane education programme to some local schools. Great job indeed!

One of our 23 release highlights for the period was when Dr Sophie took a brief trip out to Half-Moon Caye to return one of the boobies we raised this season. He was delighted to be home and after making several circuits of the area to orientate himself, he was later seen hanging out with another family. A successful release indeed!

Two barn owls rescued from the hot sun on Carnival day back in early September were also recently released. A very dedicated and long-suffering friend risked life and limb to collect these lucky babies from Belize City during the worst possible time for her personal safety! It’s also wonderful that two guys in the city cared enough to call in the rescue, picked up the birds and kept them cool and safe for the day, and then hiked half way across town to get home in time to meet our friend for the handover. This from a city that has historically harboured superstition and ill feeling toward these birds. The times are a-changing!

Once again, a massive thank you to all of our donors this quarter. We simply couldn’t do what we do without you!

Nikki & the BBR Team

Red Foot Booby juvenile
Red Foot Booby juvenile
Dr
Dr's Sophie & Gemma removing the pin on a stygian
Anabela and her wonderful class
Anabela and her wonderful class
Sophie & Gemma sorting the white fronts out!
Sophie & Gemma sorting the white fronts out!

Links:

 

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Organization Information

Belize Bird Rescue

Location: Belmopan, Cayo - Belize
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @BirdBelize
Project Leader:
Nicola Buxton
Belmopan, Belize
$29,290 raised of $80,000 goal
 
620 donations
$50,710 to go
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