Saturday, July 18, 2009
Last night we had a very strong windstorm, and this morning, my husband noticed a Mourning Dove nest lying on the ground under one of the Mesquite trees. Nearby on the hot gravel sat two nestlings, with the parent near them. I went out to look, and knew as the temperatures rose, the gravel would heat up to extreme temperatures. (It's supposed to reach 115 degrees today, and the humidity is high because of cloud cover.)
I came in and did some research on rescuing baby birds, and found out the only thing to do for them at this age is to put the original nest into a hanging basket, put the babies in it and securely hang the basket in the tree where the nest had been. Contrary to popular belief, parents do not reject baby birds because they have a "human smell", actually, birds have a poor sense of smell. If the parents can find the babies, odds are they will continue to care for them.
I'll be watching the rest of the day to see if a parent returns to the basket. If not, the article I read said to contact a wildlife rehabilitator. Since doves are so prolific here, the odds that they will take a couple of nestling doves is remote, so I'll just have to see if nature provides. This is the sad side of animal and bird wildlife. A person can only do so much, and at least I've done something. The thought of letting those babies roast on the gravel was more than I could deal with.