Hawk and owl patients at our SF Bay center

A Western Screech Owl waking up after surgery, photo by Isabel Luevano

Though International Bird Rescue primarily cares for aquatic birds, there are times when other animals that fall outside of our usual spectrum of species need our help — including birds of prey. WSOW

At our San Francisco Bay center, we recently treated two such birds — a Western Screech Owl and a Red-tailed Hawk.

Frequent readers of this blog may remember the last time we featured a Western Screech Owl, one that had flown into insulation foam while workers were insulating an attic.

The owl you see above was found in Marin County with a fractured femur and was brought to our center. Staff veterinarian Dr. Rebecca Duerr pinned the fractured femur, and the bird has since been transferred to WildCare for further care.

Want to read more on this species? Owl Pages is a great resource.

A groggy owl just beginning to wake up, post-op, photo by Isabel Luevano

Also in care was a Red-tailed Hawk (shown below). RTHA

According to center manager Michelle Bellizzi, apparently this bird landed or fell into a barrel of petroleum coke sludge at a local refinery.

A quick-thinking rescuer fished this female hawk out of the basin by putting a pole into the sludge, which she grabbed onto with her impressive talons.

When it dried, the carbonaceous substance covered the hawk’s head, chest, shoulders, wings, feet and legs.

Below, Bellizzi and rehab technician Suzie Kosina wash the hawk with Dawn. The bird will be banded and sent to Lindsay Wildlife Museum for re-nesting/releasing.

Hawk photos by Diana Becker



Here, the hawk is banded and readied for transport, photos by Michelle Bellizzi.


Update: This hawk was released near Rodeo, Calif. in early August. Release photos below courtesy Wayne Lutz and Marianne Dominguez/Lindsay Wildlife Museum. Nice work!


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