Friday, September 08, 2006

My advice on caring for a baby Honeyeater

The following is a detailed and slightly obsessive edit on some advice I’ve given recently to people raising a honey eater from a baby fledgling. It won’t be of interest to anyone who doesn’t have/like birds so I apologise for that but as I found very little information on the internet about raising this tiny bird, I thought I’d post this blog to help anyone else in the situation I was in.

It is a time consuming process but well worth it as he is such a great little bird now who skims my bath every night and then sits on the tap and cleans himself with the water he’s collected. He’s a beautiful and funny guy. Having two birds helps a lot with writing the character of Jock, the parrot in the Cassidy Blair books that I write for Hachette Livre Australia..

I have a 4-year-old cockatiel called Jones at home with me (I am writer so I spend a lot of time alone) and he’s great company, so when some friends (the gorgeous Robin and the spunky Greg) found a honeyeater and brought him over in a shoebox. He was so tiny I assumed he would die that night but I looked up some scant information on the internet, learned they were lactose intolerant (although since then both Charlie and Jones sneak breakfast from me and have suffered no problems so far).

So I bought some baby food and mixed that up and fed with an eyedropper before getting some advice from Dr. Hough’s excellent assistant, Lynette, and buying the Wombaroo honeyeater mix and also the insect mix, which I stirred with warm water twice a day 3:1 ratio, feeding him whenever he cried (every half hour or so). After a while the feeding became second nature but in the beginning I made the mistake of feeding him too much at once and he ended up getting a skin infection from the sweet mixture because it would ooze out his mouth which made his lose a lot of feathers.

This happened twice although obviously I changed my super-sizing. Dr. Hough was a bit unsure how to treat him as he’s so small and apparently no one has honeyeaters as pets, or tries to, so he tried several things including tiny doses of anti-inflammatory and I washed him twice a day (which he hated) with this special mixture (I’ve forgotten the name) that cleaned his skin and reduced the ph balance, I think… anyway, eventually his feathers returned – but it was important for him to have some tiny amounts of skin treatments because it was painful to grow feathers through raw thickened skin. Eventually his advice worked and I highly recommend finding a great vet like Dr Hough if you find a sick bird or any wildlife, as he specialises in this area (there are kangaroos and various saved wild life behind the clinic). Last time I was there it was like a vet in a cartoon, there was a guy with a seagull, a girl with a tree frog and me with my honey eater. I guess they get the odd golden retriever, etc, but I’ve never seen them.

One of the main problems with Charlie’s lack of feathers was that he would get very cold. Luckily we have lots of lamps around and he’s now appropriated two of them, so I put in high wattage globes and even now he sleeps there during the day. The other problem was that he loves bathing, so when he was wet he was basically skin and scraggly feathers. You could see his breastbone clearly through his skin. We tried a variety of things but the best was (uneconomically) leaving the heater lights on in the bathroom, which made a warm, safe spot for him to retreat, which he did often.

Keeping him warm was very important of course but I wanted to give him the freedom to escape if it got too hot, so while lots of people recommended the globe and covered container for these early months I found an open cage in a safe and warm spot, with a cover over the cage so he felt protected but not in the dark, worked best. He also loved being carried in my palm in a soft towel or flannel cloth but practical reasons this became impossible after the first few days when I realise he might actually live so I made up a sling out of a very soft and strong woollen scarf that rested near my heart, but I am lucky to have a marvellow light/heater that warns the bathroom very well and very quickly, so he spent a lot of time there. In fact, If I come home at night and he doesn't come when I call, guaranteed he'll be sitting in the shower behind the shampoo bottle, impossible to see unless you know where to look. I think he grew a real affection for the place he grew well in. He seemed content to sleep there in my sling while I was working for most of the day and I guess the added bonus of heartbeat and body warmth were beneficial (in between feedings – thank goodness they don’t eat at night or this story might not have been quite such a happy one).

Obviously I didn’t take him outside at all during this time and even nowadays he’s more comfortable inside than out in a cage, but that could be because of the local birds taking an interest in him. He was just so tiny for those first few months I feared he would die each day and the lack of information about caring for such a bird is frustratingly thin, so I just kept up with various ideas until something seemed to work. He’s just such a darling bird to have around and his singing is terrific, so I’m very lucky to have made it this far with him.

Charlie quickly grew a much longer tail and wing feathers and we saw that it was likely he was a white plumed honeyeater as he developed white flames of feathers on each side of his head. Anyway, this is indulgent, sorry. I guess what I’m trying to say was that it was touch and go for a long time and I made it up, with some wise advice from Dr. Hough at times, until I even felt confident he would be strong enough to make it through and I finally bought him a bigger cagé (although both birds have the run of the house, so far neither of shown any interest in leaving but possibly they’re not yet grouchy teenagers looking for something more lively).

The things that I learned with Charlie were that like Jones, he loved company, and I was lucky because, being home a lot and spending a lot of time at my computer or on the ground near him, editing, I could keep an eye on him and he felt safe. Now he’s a VERY clingy bird and really doesn’t like being away from people. This doesn’t bother me at all but he loves sitting on our clothes in the wardrobe and this can be annoying sometimes if fresh clothes already have the tiny markings of a long stay by Charlie.

Luckily I have found that a good bristle brush is the easiest way to remove bird droppings from clothes when they’ve dried. He hitchhikes round on our shoulders and in the evenings huddles up under my chin or inside my shirt (you have to be careful) and fluffs up into a tiny pompom and tucks his head away and goes to sleep. He is very trusting and sweet. If I take a nap he sleeps as close as possible, by my mouth where it’s warm, I guess, or poised on my finger. I have no idea how he has any rest doing this but whenever I wake up he’s there. I think he might be spoiled by us somewhat.

I bought a bunch of bird song CD’s because I was feeling bad that he might lose his song, but these just seemed to freak out both birds and they are much happier singing (very loudly) along to lyrical melody type songs like those of The Carpenters, Doris Day, Janet Seidel and so forth. For some reason Jones has a particular appreciation for the seventies and dances with unusual vim and vigour whenever I play the Bee Gees or anything else like that. I guess if I had better taste in music both birds would as well…

The other things are flowers, which I steal from neighbourhood gardens as the plants I’ve bought to attract birds to our yard haven’t matured yet. These he eats completely, especially the following types: Gold Chimes, Grevillea, Kangaroo Paws, Hebe Wiri Joy, Cape Honeysuckle, and one other native I couldn’t identify that has bright orange horn like flowers that come in bunches from a low growing bush and he loves these possibly the most, as the nectar is very sweet.

He also loves cooked rice, soft cooked vegetables like potato and pumpkin, picking the juice out of corn kernels, some sweet baby foods in jars, small pieces of bread, and all types of juice, although I don’t give him much in case it’s just too sweet. Luckily there are a lot of small organic ones available now. I stopped feeding him his favourite juice blackcurrant and apple because, well, the tiny problem of his droppings became a major one when they are bright purple and staining… He’s very partial to peaches, mango, gold kiwi fruit, raisons and chopped dried fruit (tiny pieces) and apples. I’m still trying to break him of the habit of being fed. Obviously he no longer needs the syringe but he doesn’t seem to notice food is there unless I mention it to him and then shove it right up to him or put some on my finger. Sometimes he won't even look unless I wipe the end of his beak with the mixture and then he's all crazy for it. I also get whole heads of corn and slice down each row with a sharp knife so the juice is more accessible and he can drain these guys within days. Dr Anderson, who works with Dr Hough in Mitcham, says that’s because he’s bonded with me and treats me like his mother, so I need to show him what to eat (and what not to eat)

Another thing he does, which is rather gruesome, I have a wooden bird feeder outside and when I move it in the mornings and if it’s wet, there are a few worms there, as well as in the soil, and I occasionally catch them for Charlie. He bangs them against the ground until they’re unconscious and eats them; in fact, he can stuff a lot of food in his mouth, half grapes, raisons, etc. I thought about the worms purely because he once stole some 2-minute noodles from my lunch (being a writer is such a nutritious profession…) and he did the same banging with the noodles.

Pretty much everything I’ve done, aside from the discovery of Wombaroo products and the medical help, has been from trial and error, which is really why I’m writing this rambling and slightly embarrassing post.

I should add that so far Jones and Charlie get along perfectly well. They’re not best friends and they love pulling each other’s feathers at times, but mostly they’re happy to sit side by side, making me feel like Sir Francis of Assisi, on my shoulder or head. Charlie is especially fond of sleeping on the corner of my spectacles. Both birds have a habit of bursting into song whenever the phone rings or a good TV show is on (kind of rare…), but that’s about the only negative I can think of, aside from getting used to cleaning up after them if you let them fly free in your house.

Clearly I’m indulging these animals, but they are very giving, loving, friendly and hilarious companions. Charlie comes whenever I call him and loves tangling himself up in my hair and playing there, which is fun until you try to get him out. Both birds put themselves to bed when they’re had enough. I do make sure I keep them somewhere that’s not draughty and also wrap them in flannel sheets or blankets (with air holes) because I’ve had friends whose birds have died of the cold this winter and after all the time and thought put into keeping these gorgeous birds alive, I’d feel devastated, and very foolish, for neglecting them in this small and obvious way.

I hope this information helps anyone with birds, especially baby birds and fledglings. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

Yours, Kirsty

52 Comments:

Anonymous simone said...

hey Kirsty,
this is so sweet. I might have to call you dr Doolittle now...actually it's nice to know I am not the only one who dotes on my animal friends, in my case a 6 month old basset Hound with extreme seperation anxiety...he howls like a baby when we leave him alone! I think the best thing is to get another pup to keep him company...
S.

10:32 am, September 09, 2006  
Anonymous Nick Evans said...

Well....

Look what I found.

Been a while, Kirsty - how's things?

6:47 pm, September 10, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kirsty
Well done on the sucessful raising of the darling little honeyeater! He is sooo cute. Dr Hough and his staff are wonderful people, they helped our beloved bird, tweatle (R.I.P),in many ways. I wished that more people loved animals the way that they, you, and I do it would make the world be a much better place.
Look forward to more blogs from u and updates on ur feathery friends.
Sharmaine

11:39 am, September 12, 2006  
Anonymous Liz Hall-Downs said...

Oh no, another fun thing to do with my computer instead of working! You are a bad influence! ;-)
From one bird nut to another, Kirsty, this is adorable! I've written similar things, forgive me if I've already shown you this one about Currawongs :http://www.thylazine.org/archives/thyla8/thyla8e.html

3:45 pm, September 12, 2006  
Anonymous sharmaine said...

Hey Kirsty
Aww...Love the birds
and love the books
keep up all the great work
Love
Sharmaine

10:15 pm, September 18, 2006  
Blogger Brionie Hansford said...

hey kirsty,
great to see that you got your blog up and running. I hope your mum feels better soon. I think your very brave about letting people see what your life is like. Congratulations! That thing with those girls has been clearing up slowly. I think I can live with it now. I hope your all well.
Brionie xxx

6:08 pm, November 03, 2006  
Anonymous Robyn said...

Hi Kirsty,
We met at the theatre a couple of weeks ago. I too had a white plumed honey eater as a pet. Orbit was the best pet and friend. She lived with us for over 10 years, moved to Sydney and back with us, and always had free range of the houses we lived in.
She had a cage where she slept and where we put the woombaroo, drinking water that she bathed in, and flower treats. (I found any nector flower would be of great interest to her, not just natives.) Her cage door was always open. Her worst habit resulted from her very terriortial nature, she would attack our visitors, grasping their noses with her feet and putting all her might into squeezing. This was a painful experience for the unsuspecting, as her nails grew long. There were some interesting scenes in our home where we tried to trim her nails.
I found I could only catch her if I made the house dark. But she was always willing to come and perch on my finger for a while if I held my hand up.
We eventually moved to a house where we built an aviary off a window under a verandah. This was great for the poo problem, and she got to meet the locals. She would come and visit inside everyday for a bath in a bowl. I really enjoyed this ritual, and delighted in her pre bath dance.
Her favourite treat was eating from my mouth, I know that is pretty unsightly, but I loved that closeness to a native bird, of all things. She also loved eating the soft middle centre of a Tim Tam.
One day she started collecting heaps of fibres, pulling at cotton thread in clothes and tugging at wooly blankets. She put these fibres together and made a huge fluff ball - her idea of a nest. It got better over time and in the aviary took the shape of a proper looking nest - sort of. Then to my amazement she laid an egg, and started sitting on it. I wondered if she had been raped by one of the larrikan locals. The vet assured me this was most unlikely. Sadly she sat on her egg for days, but nothing came of it and she evenutally kicked it out of nest.
Then suddenly one day she was dead, there was a huge whole in my life after ten years. Thankfully I had a 3 month old baby to look after.
Enjoy every moment with Charlie. Isn't it amazing to experience the huge personality of such a little bird?
Robyn

5:02 pm, December 01, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kirsty,
found your site while I was googling "taking care of a baby honeyeater".
am taking care of one, am not sure what sort it is... yet but he is very cute :)
I also have two cinnamon pearl cockatiels who are just beginning to warble.
Anyway, your tips are godsend and I hope this little one pulls through.

-Michelle

7:43 pm, February 20, 2007  
Blogger BlueMist....Susan Freeman said...

Hi Kirsty, I also have a "White Plumed Honey Eater" whom I found as a baby a year ago...I found you here after doing a search on the internet as I was a little concerned about my little bird "Peanuts" as in the last few days he has become quiet and just sits on his perch but is still eating ok (has same mixture as what you feed yours)and he does feed himself ..I am now keeping him with me (in the computer room) as it is warmer and also to keep an eye on him...normally he is quite active..I also have a Noisy Miner I rescued
here is a link to some pics of the two birds as they grew up......
http://www.flickr.com/photos/suziblue57/3737234821/

I also live in Adelaide and would love any info you may have to help
My email is... bluemist57@yahoo.com

Also I have been trying to find out how long they live for?

Cheers Susan

8:00 am, November 06, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi kirsty, it was great to read your blog. i am caring for 3 honeyeater chicks, (eastern, i think). we found them new years eve on the ground, nest totally trashed.They didnt have their eyes open at that stage, but had a few fluffy feathers. I have been feeding them the wombaroo insectivore mix with harmony nectar mix, mixed with egg yolk, mashed bananas and mashed grapes. still feeding them with a dropper. do you have any tips on how and when to get them to feed themselves, or what other foods might be better at 2 weeks of age and onwards? I too am having trouble with the feed mixture sticking their feathers and eyelids together, so they get regular baths with a paintbrush and wet tissue, but it is still a relatively serious problem. they are just starting to fly now, but one is a bit behind the other 2, and actually seems a little retarded(he was close to death when i picked him up from the ground) but we will persevere. Any hints will be gratefully appreciated!!

8:36 pm, January 09, 2010  
Blogger Russel said...

Great read Kirsty, I have just picked up a baby Honeyeater from a bushland that was distressed jumping around on the ground. Think i am just going to feed him soggy cornflakes.

9:31 pm, January 13, 2010  
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3:39 am, August 18, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Kirsty,
Great job on raising the little one. only yesterday I found a baby Honeyeater on the road and so naturally took him/her home as I didn't want it getting run over. I plan on taking care of it. I'm interested as to where you got the Honeyeater mix from as all I've been feeding him/her in the past 24hours is worms. Thanks a bunch :D

2:26 pm, September 12, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, - thanks for your comment and question to the last person who commented about where to buy the honeyeater mix, use part insectivore, part honeyeater, and you get it from most good bird/vet/pet stores. Call around first as some don't stock it. It's by Wombaroo. They do food for loads of animals including lambs, possums, etc. I wouldn't feed him with worms much, only rarely, as they can be dirty, and not have many nutients. You can make a good mix with hard boiled egg, baby food, sweetpotato, and (oddly) dog food and use a syringe. It should be very warm, runny and you should be VERY careful feeding so that it goes into the baby's throat and not his or her lungs. Feed slowly and carefully - it's easier if they 'beg' but don't let their hunger make you rush it as they can easily be drowned. but it's important to get this baby bird a lot of nutrients early and quickly. Let me know how you go, and contact a fauna rescue group for advice. It's important you keep the baby warm and safe. Hot water bottles or heat pads are vital. But also make sure he/she can move away from them if they get to hot.
Good luck! They can be demanding but the most wonderful birds. You're lucky. if all goes well you're in for a lot of great moments.
cheers, kb
I wrote down my password somewhere on my very messy desk and it's gone, so I'm signing in as anon, but it's me, KB, not allowed into my own house. it's like being locked outside of your own house (which I was yesterday...)

8:15 am, September 13, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi,
My sister just found a baby honeyeater that fell out of a tree. Is it essential to feed him as often as every half hour as there is noone at home to feed him during the day? Will he be able to feed himself at all?
Any advice would be great- if you have time to email at emily594@optusnet.com.au.
Cheers.

9:25 pm, November 15, 2010  
Anonymous sildenafil said...

What a coincidence I had the same experience with a hamster, I just found It on my kitchen I just don't how It get there haha well i take It, I buy a big case food, well many things that was 3 months ago and as well It's still there haha

Thanks for sharing. =D

1:55 am, November 19, 2010  
Blogger Rosey said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:28 pm, January 02, 2011  
Blogger Rosey said...

Hi from WA, I just found a very baby, brown honeyeater that has fallen out of it's nest today (we found a dead baby a few days ago in the same place, been having some extreme winds and 40' summer weather lately). Your blogpost has been so helpful, I'm going to try and get some of the wombaroo mix for it. I hope it lives, poor little thing, it's so tiny. Thanks for your post, and I really enjoy reading about your finches!

8:29 pm, January 02, 2011  
Anonymous Mel said...

Hiya Kirsty,
loved your story as I`ve been looking after my little white plumed honeyeater for about 4 mnths now (Twiddler). He hangs out in our big avairy with all the other sorts of birds we have but his best mate is Turner my pet bearded dragon (lizard). They hang out on a log in the avairy Twiddler usually prunes and sits on Turner`s back it` sooo cute to see. Twiddler is also very clingy as we have a very close bond he`s had afew strokes,a broken leg and has been attacked by some lizards when I had him on the lawn he still doesn`t fly but with all the bad encounters that has happened to him he`s still alive and seems to be a happy twiddling little bird that makes us laugh. I`m trying to only see him afew times a day to break the bond atm due to work and all, he seems to like it in there but I usually can`t help myself and there I am at the avairy giving him a treat and a rub. Mel from South Hedland

5:36 pm, January 04, 2011  
Anonymous viagra online said...

I don't have pets, yet because my apartment it's kind of small, anyway thanks for sharing, maybe I'll need your advices.
Good luck.

5:08 am, January 05, 2011  
Anonymous Miami auto repair said...

That's so sweet honey... you might have to be very patient for take care of it Kristy this is adorable... Love it so much

12:13 am, January 06, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for your post on how to care for a Honeyeater. I found Frank Sinatra, a singing Honeyeater a couple of weeks before Christmas and finding this post was so helpful. Frank is now flying around the house and making himself very much at home. It was really amazing to watch him grow so quickly from a tiny puff to a sleek competent bird.

6:08 pm, January 06, 2011  
Anonymous Pam said...

Hi Kirsty

Thankyou so much for your story about the honeyeater. We just went through the same thing with our honeyeater. He also had a problem with the honey mix and his feathers and looked feral for awhile. He didn't get a skin infection though but we taught him to love water and he baths constantly. He spends good days outside in a big cage and other days inside. He also loves company and is curious about everything we do. He also flies inside and has worked out how to go through doors if we aren't quick enough. I didn't know about fruit so you have answered that question.

Thankyou

8:11 pm, February 18, 2011  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kirsty, thank you for this post. I was asked to care for a baby honeyeater that's fallen off its nest by my landlord. Lucky I have a rainbow lorikeet and have wombaroo nectarivore mix. Still not really sure how to look after the young birdy though. It's licking off warm mix off my finger and is now asleep. I am crossing my fingers that it'd live! Thanks for the tips though! And can you tell me where this vet is? I live in Adelaide CBD area. Thank you!

http://ziekeet.tumblr.com

http://twitter.com/ziekeet

9:23 pm, April 08, 2011  
Blogger michele said...

Hi Kirsty,
Glad to read your comments, as I have just 'adopted' two baby honey-eaters that tumbled out of their nest. They have feathers and are at the hopping about stage and testing their wings.
I got advice from WIRES which was a big help.
They suggested that as the mother bird was around that I leave them out in the tree, and she has been diligently feeding them. I have been bringing them in at night as there is a cat that prowls at night, and they really can only fly horizontally at the moment!
I was wondering how long it takes for them to really spread their wings and get off the ground. I don't want to adopt them as such, but just make sure they are safe until they can fly. Any advice is great ... Thank you!
Michele

7:26 am, January 13, 2012  
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11:20 pm, June 12, 2012  
Anonymous Julia said...

Hi Kirsty,
Thanks so much for your blog! I found a singing honeyeater chick on a walkway a few days ago and your advice has been priceless. The chick (still unnamed as I have no idea what sex it is) is doing well and I am being extra careful to make sure any drips on its front get completely cleaned off after reading about Charlie. My cat's nose is totally put out of joint!
Thankyou sooooo much.

8:12 pm, November 30, 2012  
Anonymous Linda & Kevin said...

Hi Kirsty and others,

Just a short note on food for birds. Anything with a high Iron content is a no no. Someone mentioned sweet potato and this is a definite no. Apparently birds cannot get rid of excess Iron and it builds up. Do a GOOGLE search for more on this subject.
Enjoyed your blog Kirsty, we have a similar story with our Noisy Miner BeeBee and these guys are simply adorable and a lot of work but worth it.

9:02 am, April 07, 2014  
Blogger PetLoversSoul said...

Hi Kristy,
I have recently just picked up a baby honeyeater that has tied to fledge from its nest too early and unfortunately ended up int he gutter this morning.. He looks EXACTLY the same as the small guy in your earlier photos of Charlie, I was hoping you could tell me what type of honeyeater he is?
I initially just thought white-plumed but now my mum has me second guessing and I'm trying to hunt down images on the net to match him to something.
Love your little story about him too by the way, this will be so helpful for me :)

6:11 pm, August 16, 2014  
Anonymous brittany said...

Hi Kirsty, hope you still use this blog.
I rescued a baby honeyeater bird from inside a tractor today, as I live in a rural area..
His leg is broken and so I have in now in a cage.. I made my own nectar from 2 cups water 1/2 cup sugar, also give him honey, and water..
But I have to dip my finger in the water and also the nectar mix just to get him to have it..
Hoping he will stay alive but not sure what to do with the broken leg.. he tries to fly and hobble around on 1 foot but its so sad to see him as he really tries!
the rescue group I called said he will die overnight... its been 6hrs and his still going strong.
what do u recommend I do? I live too far away from a vet.
Thanks

5:52 pm, September 26, 2014  
Blogger dyso53 said...

thank you so much for this information. I came home from visiting my neighbours and found this little ball of feathers sitting in the sun on my back lawn. Luckily my dog had not spotted him. Now for the fun.

1:35 pm, October 08, 2014  
Anonymous Misha said...

Hi there I found an adorable baby like yours and read heaps of other posts online that said to take it back and if you found its parents they would look after it even on the ground! I did and the excited parents came back and I thought they were so happy I stayed for an hour watching them feed him in intervals. I came back a few hours later to check him and he was dead along with another native bird not far from him. I was devastated. My first thoughts when I found him were to take him to a native bird sanctuary and if I had he would at least still be alive. So please, if you find one and they can't fly, please please don't leave it on the ground. The parents can't really protect it.

9:25 am, November 25, 2014  
Blogger Dale said...

Hi Kristy, found this quite useful as I've saved an adult yellow spotted Honeyeater from the storm. Would love to have a chat about it further as I've only ever cared for parrots and learning about these awesome soft bills everyday. Thanks a lot Dale Ward Thefishcure@gmail.com

10:45 pm, April 21, 2015  
Blogger Unknown said...

This is so helpful, i rescued a very young honeyeater form my cat today and although we don't expect him to live too long we intend to try our best

9:04 pm, November 02, 2015  
Blogger Andrea Johnson said...

I know it's been a long time since this was posted, but I thought that I'd contribute where I can for anyone else who needs the info. One of the best things you can give them in early hours of care is First

7:54 am, November 26, 2015  
Blogger Andrea Johnson said...

Darn, didn't post properly. first Aid food for birds, or my old staple of hydrayte/pedialite warmed and fed with a little sugar. The electrolytes have literally been lfesavers for some of my patients. With the leg my grandpa swore by a drinking straw, cut vertically slipped around the leg as a temporary splint until you get to a vet/wildlife carer. I've used a toothpick on either side of the leg and wrapped with a thin strip of bandage quite successfully as a proper splint before. The golden rules of baby birds are warmth (never feed a bird until they are warm, it can kill them), electrolytes and warm food (in irder if importance), quiet and calm. Also if the case is a difficult one don't let pride stand in the way of handing the bird to a proper carer, they are living creatures, not just experiments. Sometimes all we should be is the life jacket, I learned that the hard way when I started out as a carer.

8:01 am, November 26, 2015  
Blogger Andrea Johnson said...

The sane thing happened to me with a baby dove a few years back. If you can't put them back in the nest then never leave then on the ground. It sucks fir the parents, but seeing their flightless baby mauled and killed on the ground would suck more. I had one baby where the parents had visitation rights to their supervised child (nest way too high for me to climb to), over time the mum laid new eggs and moved on instead

8:05 am, November 26, 2015  
Anonymous Janis said...

Hi I need your help :) I found a little baby honey eater today not sure how old. How long do they sleep for ? Should I wake it to feed??

2:50 am, December 06, 2015  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How do you find out if it is male or female?

12:09 pm, January 11, 2016  
Blogger Gerri said...

A neighbour just gave me what I think is a baby honeyeater which they found this morning. He is very little and the base of his beak is yellow. He was very hungry and didn't know wha to do so caught a moth and fly and gave it to him. I'm worried now that this will make him sick! I have also been giving him water with a dropper with a little honey in it. He seems ok and has had three poops but the last one was very runny and not white like the other two. Am I giving him too much water? Just found your post. I also work so is difficult. Any advice...please. Thanks














1:45 pm, March 14, 2016  
Anonymous Aliza Sartor said...

Wow ! NIce baby Honeyeater!!! Reallyn first Aid food for birds, or my old staple of hydrayte/pedialite warmed and fed with a little sugar. The electrolytes have literally been lfesavers for some of my patients.

12:13 am, May 22, 2016  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks so much! This was really helpful and I enjoyed reading it :)

10:48 am, October 14, 2017  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kristy,
Found this blog when I was searching some info on Honey Eaters, and I'm currently looking after one. He was given to me after our wildlife carer supervisor found him nearby, in September, and we raised him in a box for a while. Now he's in a big cage, with long tail feathers and colours showing through. I was just wondering (and hoping) if anyone or yourself have advice as to when is it the right time to set them free into the wild?

2:39 pm, October 14, 2017  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, this info is really helpful, unlike other websites.

6:16 pm, November 03, 2017  

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