by Carol Manglos-Foster
(Onemo, Virginia )
Strange Guest At The Inn
It was September, 2018. My husband and I had just moved to Onemo, Virginia from Upstate New York.
We bought a bed and breakfast, Foster's Bethel Beach Inn was ready for its first guests.
Moving was an adjustment, a big change. We were completely unfamiliar with tides in the area, but were having some fun exploring it all.
On this particular day in September we experienced some pretty extreme tidal flooding, so we went down to the beach to see how high the water was.
As we approached the beach, we saw a young Osprey standing in the water. The strange thing is that he didn't fly away when we approached.
We watched him try to fly, but he could not.
It was thrilling to know that we may be involved in a rescue for this magnificent bird!
It happens I had an umbrella and a raincoat in my car (stay prepared!) so my husband brought me the umbrella and I slowly stepped forward to see if the Osprey would step up on it.
To our surprise, he did. He seemed to know we were there to help.
My husband wrapped him carefully in the raincoat, and we drove him to our house, the Inn, a short distance away.
He stayed on our porch while we called around to find a rescue place to take him, which we eventually found and were able to drop him off there.
In the meantime he got quite comfortable on the front porch of our b and b.
My husband went to get him some Menhaden (also known as mossbunker and bunker, are forage fish), a favorite of Osprey, but he would not eat.
We later learned Osprey rarely eat in captivity, such as a rescue.
We wondered why he wasn't flying, since he didn't appear to be injured and a local man who had formerly done bird of prey rescue told us that sometimes, later in the season, the young adults get weak because their parents leave and they have not learned to be proficient enough in hunting to keep up their strength.
While at first we thought his wings might be waterlogged, he was simply too tired to fly.
Since we knew nothing about where to take our new fierce and feathered friend, we called the person who used to be involved in bird of prey rescue near us, and he suggested a veterinary hospital about 30 miles away.
We called and spoke with the receptionist and she told us we could bring him in right away.
So, we wrapped our raptor up in the raincoat and put him in the back of my SUV where my pup usually rides; a nice gate preventing her from jumping seats kept the Osprey from disrupting the ride.
He didn't seem to mind it: Maybe he'll tell his friends of his great adventure too.
After he was safely on his way to recovery, we reflected on what had just happened.
If you had told us a month before that our first distinguished guest at the Inn would be an Osprey, we would have never believed it.
A strange guest at the Inn, indeed!
More About Wild Bird Rescue
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How To Help Sick Birds? It is a distressing experience to witness a sick bird at your bird feeding area. Learn what you can do to help.
Do You Know The Leading Cause Of Wild Bird Deaths and Injuries? You may be very surprised what the answer is to this question. The most important thing everyone can do to help birds survive is to take action to solve this problem.