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Busy Day

So we are preparing for the big build of the 3 8x16' mammal cages.  I thought I was going to get to finish cleaning the area, but Peg had something else in mind for me which thrilled me to no end.

We have an American Kestrel female with a badly broken wing.  Today I got to prepare a flight cage for her outside!  This is a big step towards recovery for the little lady.  I had to think about a lot of things in doing the cage.  Safety, exercise, location etc.

There is a lot that goes into building a cage that I never really thought about until today.  Peg told me why I needed the things I did and then said to figure out how to do it with what we had handy.  Being a non-profit and small rehab facility means being creative. LOL

So I put flight netting inside the cage to keep her from being caught in the bigger wires.  Then I put up a tarp on the side that faces our wood/wire supply pile since saturday it's going to be very busy.  This will give her privacy.  we put a small carrier in there with towels for her to hide in.  I arranged new branches in the flight cage so that she could hop from the ground, water supply all the way up to a really high branch about 6' off the ground.  it interlaced back and forth across the cage so that while her wing is healing she can still get around but have enough room to exercise the wing.

Peg taught me about kestrels, their mating habits, their nesting habits, etc.  It's really the first time so far that we have really done the teacher/student bit and it was great because it was hands on and applicable to what I was doing.  She has it in her to be a great teacher if she wasn't soo focused on being a biologist. LOL

I am really nervous about this big build project I am taking on.  I know Fran has the building supplies, parts, designs, etc. covered.  I am now focused on the press releases, the pizza for the volunteers, the drinks/ice, and hoping we get enough!  We have a pavillion nearby for everyone to sit and take breaks at which is great.  I really want this to pull off well as it will be the big part of my evaluation.  I can get volunteers from anywhere as I have tons of friends into wildlife, but to actually pull off the build will be sweet.

I have no idea what to do for internships/volunteering this summer - if you guys have ideas - let me know!  May will be spent with Dr. B doing: wetland study, bog study, bird count in 3 mile radius, macro invertebrate study on Shenandoah and Potomac rivers for health of water.  But that is 1 month and there is still June, July and August to deal with.

I am graduating next year!  2 more semesters!  Now what am I doing after that???? No clue. :)

Thursday is more site prep for Saturday and Friday is finalizing the shopping and copying the layout plans so people can see what goes where.  I am sooo nervous!  It's a HUGE project!

Be well!


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Mar. 12th, 2008 12:45 am (UTC)
This is probably obvious, but please please make sure her water dish is very shallow! We've got shallow ceramic plates (sides are maybe an inch high, if that) and we're only allowed to fill them up less than halfway for our male kestrel who has a half-amputated wing. This is because apparently, before I got there, we had a one-winged pygmy owl who fell into his water and drowned. :( So just a warning, make sure her water is veryvery shallow! And I want to see pictures! :)
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )



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