While walking Bennett today, we found an injured hummingbird, probably a female ruby-throated one. She sat on the sidewalk, barely moving.
I called Willowbrook Wildlife Center to see if they could help her and they thought they could. However, they also warned me that because she was so small, they might have to euthanize her. Still, I thought bringing her in was a better option than leaving her for a cat or hawk to find.
They coached me through getting her into a box. Otherwise, I followed the guidelines on their website, which mostly involved keeping the box covered, driving with the radio off, and only using the bare minimum of air conditioning.
Special parking for animal rescuers and good signage help make the drop-off process easy. I took the hummingbird inside, they took her into an area I wasn’t allowed to see and thanked me for bringing her in.
Once she was in their care, I walked their outdoor trail to see other animals they rescued.
They prefer to release animals whenever possible, but sometimes an animal is too badly injured to survive in the wild. Their center is currently home to several red-tailed hawks, a red-shouldered hawk, and some great horned and barred owls.
It wasn’t always easy to spot any of the animals. I took pictures of those I could see, but with enclosures in the way the quality isn’t great. I’ll share a few anyway.
I wandered along a half-mile trail they provided through restored prairie and spotted some flora, but no particularly remarkable fauna.
Most of the animals were within a fenced area of the center, but along the walking trail is a sandhill crane enclosure. They call their crane (who was nowhere in sight) Ichabod! I’ll pause now for the groans.
The trail made a loop, so the first and also the last animal I saw on the walk was an American kestrel. which is one of Cookie’s spirit animals (I’m guessing; it’s certainly an alias she uses). Sadly, the cage bars were so close together I couldn’t get a photo. I’m sharing this one from the National Park Service:
They were very kind at the center, and visiting was fascinating. During the hours they’re open it’s a great place to walk.