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Birdman- How a patient got the name Anchovy Angel - 2/14/2011

It seems like every time I have my cages fairly empty for a couple days all hell breaks loose. A young lady called me with a rescue and somebody in her family had my business card. She brought me a hurt pigeon that had the worst of luck to say the least. It appears the bird was attacked by a hawk. I found at least two puncture wounds on him and I think it was the hawk attack that made him hit a car when he squirmed loose. Half of his tail feathers were missing. Almost all his feathers are missing on his back from his head to his tail feathers with abrasions on his back. He kept closing a eye I think from a slight concussion and also had a wound on the top of his head. He has a wound under one wing. He also has a wound on his chest close to his neck. He has a foot that may be permanently crippled. And the top of that leg is swelled about the size of a shooting marble.

I am hoping if I can get the swelling down on that leg with antibiotics that he will regain use of that foot and its in gods hands now. He has such a will to live that I don't expect him to die. I also try to keep him on a heating pad as much as possible hoping it will help. Then the next day Animal Control brought me a Tangerine Ringneck Dove that they seized from someone that was abusing it by not giving it food and water. It is domesticated and such a sweetheart and makes the silliest laughs.

Judy & Kate who did the great story on my rescue operation in the Long Beach Post in the Petpost section. I meet with them every few months for pizza. Yesterday was the third time we had pizza together. Every time I meet them I walk through the promenade downtown when heading back and I rescued a bird every time that had its feet tied bad with string or hair. So I made sure I took my net with me when I was going to meet them because I just knew I would be taking a new patient home.

Well about 5 minutes before getting to the pizza place on Ocean Blvd. There were some birds on the ground. I spotted two almost instantly that needed my help. I rescued the one that was limping the worst and took him with me and will go back and rescue the other. He had every single toe tied with hair that was embedded in each toe. It looked as if he had been tied with the hair for a very long time the poor guy. This was the first time after all the good things that Judy & Kate have said about me. That I could show them this hurt pigeon and they could see exactly why I do what I do and just how bad they need someone to help them. We had a pizza without meat with anchovies and Judy & Kate named this little hurt guy Anchovy Angel.

I have had so many birds show me devotion for helping them in a lot of different ways. They go into a trance like look of love a lot of times when you help them and it simply melts your heart or at least mine. One flew back after I released it after untying him and he laid on my chest. Last night after midnight when I worked on this guy. It takes forever getting all the strands of embedded hair out of the deep wounds. I never know until I get it out how serious the damage is. This guy had two big toes on one foot that could not be saved. When the toes came off there was no bleeding to let you know how seriously damaged they were. Even with numbing the damaged areas pretty good he was squirming from more pain than I see in most birds.

And this was truly incredible. As soon as the damaged toes were off that was torturing this poor guy. He had this beautiful peaceful incredible calm about him that gave me goose bumps. It was just incredible to witness the relief and happiness he was experiencing.

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