Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Rescue of an Osprey

This morning we planned to attend a seminar on boat maintenance at the Laguna Madre Yacht Club here in Port Isabel.  We arrived just before 10AM and took a seat next to Skip and Nancy Maggard.  Skip tells us that there is an Osprey caught on a sailboat mast just outside the club.  This is what I found when I went outside to see.
I snapped a picture with my Droid cellphone and posted it to Facebook trying to get it to Scarlet Colley.  Luckily I had her phone number and called her to see if she knew anyone who could try to rescue the bird.  She immediately sent out a request for someone to help.  In a short time, George Colley arrived and we started trying to figure a way to help the poor bird.  We could not tell from the ground, but as I zoomed in on the pictures later, I could see that he had one talon caught in a drilled hole in a  plate on top of the mast.
George located a ladder and a another good Samaritan named Ryan arrived.  The rescue begins.  The ladder is not long enough to reach from the deck of the boat to the top of the mast.

 So they moved it to the top of the cabin
Still not tall enough so upon suggestion from Jana Craft, they precariously put the bottom rung on the sailboat boom.  Ryan got about halfway up and I heard him say "I do not think I can do this.".

But with encouragement and urging from the gallery, he climbed up high enough to reach the Osprey.  Of course the Osprey was not really sure he wanted Ryan on that mast with him.

It took several minutes, but Ryan finally freed the bird, minus one talon.
The Osprey was so tired from his ordeal, that he just lay on the ground at first.  When Ryan was safely down from the mast, he gathered the bird up in his arms.  What a wonderful sight to see him down from the mast.  Ryan and George left with him, taking him to the Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville.  There is a Veterinarian there that has lots of experience with hurt animals.
 A smiling hero and grateful Osprey

The Picassa Web album of the rescue to located here.

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