So tiny! May 27, 2020
At the time of my last update posted here, we had not taken in any baby Amazons. That quickly changed by the end of May, when we started seeing our rescue numbers increase by quite a bit! One very special baby ‘zon kicked off the 2020 baby season, and I’d like to share his* story with you.
On May 27, we received a call to our Emergency hotline from a member of the public in Pasadena. She stated that a naked, baby parrot had fallen out of its nest from a very tall palm tree in her backyard. While speaking with her, I learned that it had been out for several hours on the ground, and was feeling cold. I asked her to bring it inside to keep it warm, and then contacted our partners in the Wildlife Department at Pasadena Humane Society. Since we are based in San Diego, we typically send critical cases in that area to our PHS friends for immediate triage. Their wonderful Wildlife team was able to keep the baby warm and hydrated while I coordinated a couple of volunteers to assist with transport.
Most of our followers and supporters don’t know this, but it often takes two or three volunteers driving part of the way to get a bird from LA (or even further north) down to us. In this case, I was lucky enough to have three volunteers available to help out. The baby was driven from PHS to south LA county, then to San Clemente, and then finally to our facility in Jamul.
Upon arrival, our newest tiniest rescue caused a bit of speculation as to what species he was. Since baby parrots are completely featherless for the first several days after hatching, we can never tell whether they are Red-crowned, Lilac-crowned, or… some other less-common species of naturalized SoCal parrot. Every year, we chat about it in the weeks leading up to the emersion of their head feathers (the only sure way to identify them without DNA testing), and every year, I am wrong in my guess. It is almost always a Red-crown, with the occasional Lilac here and there.
Fast-forward a few weeks, and our little buddy is growing in size, but there is still something “different” about his progression, compared to what we are used to seeing. Then, to our collective amazement, we started to see the tiniest patch of YELLOW feathers on the front of his head. Could it be?? We have only ever rescued 5 Yellowheaded Amazons in our organization’s history, all adults (one was a young adult, but still… adult). A few more days passed, and it was official: WE HAVE A BABY YELLOWHEAD!
Affectionately nicknamed “Bubba” (due to the size disparity between him and the other Amazons), our solo Yellowhead has gone from naked, cold nestling to huge, voracious parrot in a matter of weeks. We are especially excited to see him “graduate” to one of our outdoor aviaries soon, as we have an adult Yellowhead whom we hope will become his buddy. He does get along with other Amazons, of course, but he is still younger and larger than all of them. As of this post, he is over 380 grams… and still growing!
Because of your donation (once or recurring), we are able to continue taking in and caring for birds like Bubba all year long. We definitely could not have managed a 3-person transport and multi-month specialized care without your ongoing support. I know things right now are more uncertain than ever, but I am just so grateful to everyone who takes a moment and donates to our work. Bubba will be released back to the Pasadena area (along with our other Yellowhead) in the Fall, and he survived thanks in part to you and your consideration to support our efforts!
*I don’t know whether Bubba is male or female, we do not DNA test wild parrots
Younger and yet bigger than other nestlings
Tiny yellow head feathers!!
So yellow, so gorgeous, so big!
Almost fully grown! Aug 6, 2020