By: Jen Russon
At first sight, the newborn bird Suzanne Shapiro discovered while walking her dogs appeared to be dead. Covered by ants, the motionless, pink mockingbird lay at the tree’s base in Shapiro’s Heron Bay neighborhood.
“At first, I thought, well, maybe this is just how the food chain works — that there was nothing I could do. Then I saw its little chest moving up and down and couldn’t bear to leave it there,” said Shapiro, a travel agent who has lived in Coral Springs and Parkland for nearly a decade.
She added it was already around 6 p.m., so she knew there was no chance of taking it to the South Florida Wildlife Center right away, as a friend suggested.
“I asked my daughter, Jenny, to go get a paper plate and help me safely remove the bird to a shoebox,” she said, adding they padded the box and punched air holes in the lid.
The Shapiro’s contacted Coral Springs Animal Hospital, which accepts injured wildlife after hours; however, animals discovered during the daytime should be taken directly to the wildlife center in Ft. Lauderdale.
The center, which relies entirely on donations, had good news to share about the baby bird Shapiro rescued.
“They told me I saved a life,” she said.
Shapiro added how she was told the first 48 hours following an animal rescue are critical and that her family is just happy they could help.
Carolina Segarra, director of volunteer services at the nonprofit, said the bird Shapiro rescued in July is still in their nursery and has a bit more growing up to do before placement in their outdoor rehab area.
She said the rehab area is where the organization makes final preparations to release the animal back into the wild.
“We are hopeful this little one will continue to do well and are so grateful to our finders for being brave enough to help our local wildlife,” said Segarra.
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- Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.
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