Kookaburra Returns to the Bush

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In mid-September 2013 BOOBOOK’s Wildlife Carer, Meryl, stopped to pick up an injured Kookaburra on the side of the road approximately 35 kilometres North of Roma.   Upon first inspection, there were no obvious breaks to wings or other body parts, however, its left eye was quite blurry and it was obviously in a state of shock.  We surmised its injuries were sustained by flying into the path of an oncoming vehicle travelling on this very busy road.   Upon waiting for traffic to ease to be able to cross the road and catch the bird, Meryl noticed it somersaulting numerous times in the wake of the wind produced from larger vehicles, such as trucks.  After capture, it was quite happy to be bundled up out of harm’s way in an old shirt Meryl had in the vehicle she was driving.

 

Upon returning to town the Kookaburra was kept in a dark box for the first twelve hours.  It wasn’t interested in eating at all and we weren’t sure whether it would last the night, thinking injuries to its head might have been severe.  However it did survive and the next day it was placed in a cage.  Lacking in condition, possibly due to the shortage of food from drought in the region, it began to eat some liver later that day.  The left eye remained blurry for several days.

 

Over the next two weeks the Kookaburra gradually improved with rest, minimal disturbance and a diet of liver and mice, often eating two to three mice in a day.  Its blurry eye also improved so that it could see out of it to some extent again.  The Kookaburra called when some of the local kookaburras turned up for a visit. IT gradually became more and more active in the cage, to the point that it told us through its actions that it was ready to go!  We carefully bundled it back up in a box and released it close to where it was found,.  Although a little wobbly at first flight, the kookaburra seemed very glad to be returning back home to the bush again. .