Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Meet Peg

Peg is short for Peg Leg.

I found Peg Saturday evening, caught by one leg, in a large rodent snap trap in our pasture.

I released her, scooped her up, and brought her into the house.

Her leg was a mess; a bloody compound fracture with her foot dangling by a long, skinny piece of skin.

I had to amputate her leg with toenail clippers.
 (I had big dreams of being a vet when I was a kid.)

While I was bandaging her stub (with cotton and antibiotic gel wrapped with first aid tape - and duct tape for good measure),  her eyes closed and I thought she was dying.

I said, "Don't you die on me little birdy!  I haven't lost a patient on the kitchen counter operating table yet!"

She rallied.  
I think she was just in shock.

I was surprised to find Peg still alive Sunday morning.  I fed her a mix of wild finch seed and millet pieces.  ????  Just guessing on what might be right.  She hung on and was a feisty little dish, escaping once to fly madly around my laundry room.

I dropped Peg off at an avian vet's office Tuesday.  I knew she needed to be on antibiotics and might need her boney stub cauterized and I wasn't sure what to do next. 

I thought Peg might be some kind of finch.  The vet said she's definitely not a finch but wasn't sure what kind of bird she is.  (The vet deals mostly with parrots, but kindheartedly treats wild birds that find their way to her office.)  I emailed Peg's picture to  a friend who said she looks like an immature meadowlark, and said she really should have some bugs to eat.

Do you think Peg is a young meadowlark?

The vet doesn't keep live food on hand, so I took some mealworms to the office today.  Good timing too.  They just got a flicker in that had been caught in a volleyball net and injured its wings.

So Peg - the alleged meadowlark - and the flicker will be eating good tonight.

Yum! Yum! Deeeelicious!

Gosh!  I dropped 100 mealworms off at the vet's office.  That might not feed two hungry birds for very long.


  1. I hope she heals quickly and is able to either come home or be released into the wild again. Is that possible without a leg? You really helped save her, I'm sure she's grateful.

    1. I think birds get along fine with just one leg. I saw her at the vet office and she was looking good. Hopefully they'll be able to release her.

  2. My mother succesfully raised and released a baby magpie named Champ. We also had a Mourning Dove named Kazoo that lived with us for years after recovering from a broken wing (never enough to fly, though). I hope Peg will heal. She does look very much like a young Meadowlark to me, one of my favorite birds.

    1. Women after my own heart. Nice that Champ and Kazoo found caring people to help them.

  3. Poor Peg but good for you in taking care of her. I'm too much of Townie to have done anything useful.

    1. I wasn't sure what to do myself, so I called someone who rehabs wild birds. I would have taken Peg to her, but she's not nearby. I was glad the vet was willing to take her.

  4. The vet left me a voice message and said the poor Flicker didn't make it. But Peg is doing well. I don't know if they've released her (or him) yet. Good luck Peg!

  5. That is quite a story - from surgery right down to mealworm provisions! Where does one get 100 meanworms? lol!

    Good luck Peg! Poor honey - so glad you saved her!

    1. They sell mealworms at the pet stores. PetCo and PetSmart have them. Wild bird feed stores have them too. The 100 count container was the smallest option. Ewww. Gotta keep them in the refrigerator, or they turn into beetles. Double Ewww.