Late Thursday afternoon, February 24, Melanie Furr with Atlanta Audubon put out a call for help on GABO’s (Georgia Birders Online) list serve:
There is a grebe on the lake at Murphy Candler Park (DeKalb Co) with a ring around its neck (appears to be a dog toy?). The bird does not appear to be able to dive or fly. A canoe will probably be needed to get to the bird. If there’s anything that anyone can do to help, please get in touch with me.
“A canoe will probably be needed…”. That was a key phrase. Jack Wissner (aka KyakJak), our friend here in Peachtree Park, responded immediately with an offer to help with his canoe. Perfect team for the job – Melanie with her long experience rescuing animals and Jack with his formidable skills in a canoe. I went along as observer and unskilled labor.
The next morning Melanie went early to the lake and called Jack to say the bird was still there and still in trouble. So we loaded the canoe on Jack’s car and went to Murphey Candler.
Jack and Melanie paddled the lake from one end to the other several times but were unable to locate the bird. After a couple of hours, two additional resources from Atlanta Audubon came to help with the search. No luck.
Then finally the Grebe was spotted on the far side of the lake and to everybody’s relief it had managed to free itself from the constraining plastic.
Great adventure, and in the process we learned a lot about animal rescue and met some talented, dedicated individuals.
All of this prompted us to do some homework on wildlife rescue, the results of which are included on our page “Learn About Wildlife Rescue“.
Thanks to Melanie, Jack and the folks at Atlanta Audubon for this most excellent urban wildlife adventure!