Titch the injured swallow

Hi,

Thought it’d be good to update about poor Titch.

Sadly, Titch died last Saturday evening.  He was unable to remain perched and had to spend his last hours on the bottom of the cage.

We wonder if he already a health problem when he left the nest, hence his crashing and breaking of his wing.  Maybe being in captivity contributed to his poor health.

Over time he gradually went completely blind, the lids closing completely over both eyes. We tried special ointment for caged birds but to no avail.  The anti-biotics made no difference. We bought vitamin powder, tonic  solution to add to his water, and ground egg supplement, but nothing seemed to improve his deteriorating condition.

We did think about trying to release him but we came to the conclusion that while he would have had his freedom it would very likely have been very short-lived, and if he had dropped down to the ground we may not have been able to rescue him. We decided therefore to persist in restoring his health and then eventually releasing him in the spring.

It was quite sad: he was cute and friendly and had hopes that we could nurse im back to health. But it was not to be.

Would w do it again? Yes, but we introduce the supplements much earlier,  maybe consult a vet, or contact a bird rescue centre who have experience  with swallows.

Ironically just days before he died we discovered that there is a couple who  run a rescue/rehab operation close by. We were going to contact them to see if they could help, but too late.

Better news, Bob the rook still comes every day, usually mornings and gets fed dried mealworms, and his favourite food of bread and margarine!    We also give him fresh water.

He has an injured leg but we do not know the extent of the injury but it does not seem too bad.
He notices when you are around, i.e. if he sees you through a window.

He will try to land on you in his excitement and just yesterday he tried several times to land on me when he saw I had food and water ready to give him. However, It is my partner who usually does the feeding and while she is happy to have him perch on her arm, I have yet to experience this – he always takes me by surprise and my initial reaction is to duck away and fend him off!

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This is the first I heard of Tich –

We have been looking after an injured young swallow that we found on the  23rd August – we have had it for a week now. We found it on the ground  with an apparently broken wing. Amazingly, it made no attempt to get away  and allowed us to pick it up. We decided to look after it, rather than  allow it to end up the meal of a cat or fox or such like.

We now have it  in a canary cage and are feeding it live and dried mealworms, flies etc. 
We are trying to teach it to help itself to food and water!

We are are  considering ways of maintaining a live food supply throughout the winter. 
We will also have to make sure it is kept warm but we do not know what an  appropriate temperature range would be.

It is really cute but we are  saddened by the fact it is on its own. Is it possible to get hold of 
another (injured?) swallow from somewhere to keep it company. How can we 
find out if ours is a make or female?

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There has been other correspondence inbetween this first and last email chat.

I think that they did the right thing and think that it is great that they gave this one small, injured swallow so much care, love  and attention. 

I know there will be a difference of opinion as to whether an inujured bird should be left or not.  I know it’s hard to walk by an injured bird.  For one thing they seem to lose their fear of us – and do not seem to shy away from us, but take to the attention.

I know from other emails that they sent to me that Tich was perched in a cage near a window and seemed to enjoy himself – and also had the best care and attention.

Thanks for sharing this with us.  Trisha

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