by Kevin Mack, PAWS Wildlife Naturalist
the walls of the PAWS Wildlife Center the arrival of fall is heralded
by the changing color of leaves, a change in the weather and changes in
the wild community with which we share our wooded campus. In recent
weeks the PAWS Campus has played host to Winter Wrens, Varied Thrushes,
Golden-crowned Kinglets and a number of other species that were absent
during the summer months. Inside the center, there are changes as well.
Animals who arrived as orphaned babies earlier in the summer reach the
age of independence and are released. The number of patients we take in
each day decreases, and there is a shift from mainly young animals to
mostly adults. We have experienced this shift over the past few weeks,
but we have certainly had no shortage of interesting patients. The
following photos will introduce you to a few of our recent arrivals.
October 8, PAWS Wildlife Center received a Leach's Storm-Petrel who had
been found on the roof of North Seattle Community College. These tiny
seabirds are nocturnal, and they are often confused by and drawn to
bright lights. It is likely that the storm-petrel was disoriented by a
light on top of the college and flew headfirst into it.
have tube-like nostrils on top of their beaks and, unlike most bird
species, have an excellent sense of smell. Fortunately, this
storm-petrel was not badly injured. After recuperating in a
net-bottomed cage for a day, he was moved to a large pool, where he
spent a few days. He preened regularly and restored his feathers' water
repellency. He was released back to Puget Sound at dusk on October 13.
On October 7, a Red-naped Sapsucker was brought to the wildlife center
after striking the window of a Bellevue home. She had suffered head
trauma but had no apparent bone fractures. Birds are confused by the
reflective quality of glass. If light hits a window at such an angle
that it reflects an image of the surrounding trees and vegetation, a
bird cannot tell the difference between the reflected vegetation and
the real thing. You can reduce the chances that a bird will strike your
window by blocking or eliminating these reflections. Learn more by
reading the Songbirds Fact Sheet.
regularly receives Red-breasted Sapsuckers, and occasionally receives
Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers. This is the first Red-naped Sapsucker that
PAWS has received in at least the past 13 years. In this photo you can
see the distinctive red patch on the back of the bird's neck. The
sapsucker spent several days recovering from her impact with the window
and was then moved to an outdoor flight pen. At the time of this
writing she was flying well and awaiting her release.
female American Robin was brought to PAWS Wildlife Center on October 12
after she was attacked by a cat. She suffered some damage to her right
wing during the attack and was awaiting an X-ray when this photo was
taken. Close to 15% of the wild animals that PAWS receives annually are
brought to us after being attacked by domestic cats. It will be safer
for both your cat and wildlife if you do not allow him to roam free and
unsupervised. Enclosures, leashes and many other options are available
to keep your cat safe and happy while still allowing him to get some
fresh air and sunshine. Read more in the PAWS magazine article, "A Safe Cat is a Happy Cat."
the sapsucker, this Golden-crowned Kinglet flew headfirst into a
window. He suffered head trauma and a wing injury in the process.
In this photo the kinglet had recovered to the point where he regained his appetite.
adult Coyote was found on October 12. He was struggling to stand in the
middle of Hwy. 101 after having been struck by a car in Cosmopolis, WA
near Aberdeen. A concerned citizen stopped and scooped him up, and then
drove him over 100 miles to PAWS.
The Coyote is recovering from a fractured leg and seems to be healing well.
young Bobcat was found emaciated and wounded in Clear Lake on October
1. Now at PAWS, she is slowly recovering. Judging from her wounds, it
is likely that the Bobcat was separated from her mother when she was
struck by a car.
another window-related casualty, this Varied Thrush was brought to PAWS
on October 15. Varied Thrushes spend the summer in the foothills and
mountains, and migrate to lower altitudes in the fall. Many of them
fall victim to the cars, cats, windows and other human created dangers
that exist in the heavily developed lowlands.
Northwest leader in protecting animals since 1967, the Progressive
Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) shelters homeless animals, rehabilitates
injured and orphaned wildlife, and empowers people to demonstrate
compassion and respect for animals in their daily lives.
All rights reserved. ©2008 Progressive Animal Welfare Society
PAWS, P.O. Box 1037, Lynnwood, WA 98046