Raising Baby Mergansers: Chicks with Expensive Tastes

Every spring and summer, Bird Rescue raises hundreds of orphaned baby birds. Some species are more demanding to raise than others, and Common Mergansers chicks are among the most difficult. While they are without a doubt some of the cutest babies we see in care, they have very particular dietary needs that come with a hefty price tag

In the wild, Common Mergansers dive for fish as their main diet during much of the year. Young birds that we raise must be equipped with those hunting skills in order to survive post-release. To help them hone those critical skills, we feed Merganser chicks live minnows. This gives them the chance to dive and pursue prey just as they would in the wild. You can see these baby birds in action through the video to the right

Our San Francisco Bay-Delta wildlife center is currently raising four of these merganser chicks, and each one is likely to require several hundred dollars worth of minnows before they are grown. You can help us nourish both the bodies and the minds of these little birds by making a donation today. Every little bit makes a difference, and together we can give these orphaned birds a second chance at life in the wild!