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Finding a fledgling baby raptor is not a clear cut sign that the bird is an orphan.  Like songbirds, they don’t immediately fly when they fledge their nest.  They too spend a few days on the ground, learning to fly while the parents continue to feed them. 


They require such specialized care, and it is best to leave them alone.  A nestling raptor, one that does not have all of it’s feathers in and still has bare areas on it’s body, and is covered in down, may just have fallen out of the nest and will need to be place back in a makeshift nest the same as you would for a songbird. 


Do not attempt to take them in and raise them yourself – even for a ‘couple of days’.  Contact your nearest authorized wildlife custodian or call a specialized raptor rehabilitation centre for advice and assistance.  Be very cautious handling them, they can injure you with their talons, even at that young age. If the raptor has it's eyes closed, it is urgent that you get it to a licensed wildlife rehabilitation centre with that has extensive knowledge and experience in caring for raptors.


Note:  the terms raptors, birds of prey, owls are interchangeable and refer to the same class of birds.  Whether they are orphaned or injured, they require highly skilled and specialized care and handling. 



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Last modified: 09/23/16 08:17 PM