One of the young birds rescued by Kildare Animal Foundations
Last week saw us take in a number of clutches of house martins and swallows.
We normally see a rise in numbers at this time of year. Nests tend to fall after some heavy rains and the chicks are nearly ready to fledge.
When this happens, we offer lots of advice to people to try and reunite the chicks with their parents. This can be difficult as the nest sites are normally two stories up.
There are very few situations where a temporary nest can be placed, but in some cases it is possible.
The containers that your take-away comes in can come in very handy. These can be lined with the old nest and secured in a site very close to the original nest.
The chicks will call out to their parents, and they should communicate back and forth for a while. At this stage, the parents are unsure of the new nest site and want to be sure before coming in to feed.
Once one parent makes that leap, then the other will follow and then the rescue is classed as successful.
When it doesn’t go as planned, then we need to take the young birds into our care. They will then be fostered by one of our volunteers.
They will only get one carer, like all our other orphans. This cuts down the chances of the animals or birds being imprinted on humans.
House martins, swallows and swifts can be difficult to hand rear, as they need an all insect diet and they rarely self-feed. Swifts will never self-feed in captivity.
Once the youngsters are fully feathered, they will start flying and building up their flight muscles.
Once we are happy with their flying and their weight, we will release them back where they came from or with a nearby group. At this time of year, the race is on to get them back to the wild as quickly as possible because they will all be making their way back to Africa for the winter. The journey is a long and dangerous one.
We will all await their return in spring to start the cycle once again. We just hope our rehabilitated young ones will return too.
Dog Walk at Castletown
In aid of Kildare Animal Foundation on Sunday, September 10 at 12 noon.
Join us, either with or without your doggy friend- for a gentle ramble through the stunning grounds of this historic house.
Meet in front of the house at 11.30am and the walk starts at 12noon. Our volunteers are collecting donations on the day. Please drop by and support our shelter.
Please note: all dogs must be kept on lead as there is a lot of wildlife on the grounds.
Kildare Animal Foundation, located outside Kildare town, is a voluntary organisation that provides a safe haven for neglected or abused animals. Tel: 045 522929, email email@example.com or log on to www.animalfoundation.ie. All donations welcome