Veterinarian heals injured migratory birds

Veterinarian heals injured migratory birds

Veterinarian heals injured migratory birds

Veterinarian Gökçe Coşkun, who carries out scientific studies on wildlife rehabilitation, provides voluntary treatment for birds that leaves Africa and the Arabian Peninsula in March and are injured during their migration to Northern Europe via Türkiye.

A member of the Antalya Bird Watching Society, Coşkun said that he had so far treated 16 birds that were tired of migration, injured, or fell out of the nest this spring migration period and returned them to nature. Coşkun stated that he received 267 bird reports from Türkiye and that nearly 50 percent of them could not be saved.

Among the birds he treated were little owl, short-eared owl, small bittern, flycatcher, sand swallow, bee-eater, sparrow, pallid-swift and many others.

Stating that 4,000 of the 11,000 bird species in the world are migratory species, Coşkun said that 2.1 million of the migrating species that migrate via Türkiye are songbirds, raptors, shorebirds and ducks. He said that the total number of migrating birds together with other species is over 5.5 million.

Explaining that 59.3 of the birds in need of help returned to nature thanks to his work throughout Antalya, Coşkun said that this year, people’s awareness increased and there was a significant increase in the number of birds returning to nature.

Coşkun, who also shared the results of the article he prepared according to last year’s data, said that trauma ranks first with 47 percent in the distribution of bird cases according to symptoms. “Twenty-two percent are orphans, 29 percent are cat attacks, nine percent are migratory fatigue and this continues as gunshot wounds and infections. The survival rate of birds is 59.3 percent, while the rest die. On the other hand, the death rate is 100 percent in gunshot wounds and infections,” he added.

Coşkun stated that birds that hit the glass, enter through the open window and fall to the ground these days and that they should be paid great attention. He said that those who find birds in need of help from many parts of Türkiye contact him and he advises them to apply to the Directorate of Nature Conservation and National Parks (DKMP).

Explaining that he also provides information on his social media account about how to care for the bird during this process, Coşkun said, “When a bird in need of help is found, it should be kept stable in a cardboard box and experts should be contacted. Unfortunately, we can lose them because of wrong interventions.”

“However, a little knowledge can save a life. When you find a bird, keeping it at home without expert opinion or saying ‘I will feed it at home’ may result in its death. You should get information as soon as possible and keep it in a quiet environment. When you find a bird, do not try to feed it immediately. You should get information about what food that species consumes and how you should feed it. In general, liquid supplementation is applied instead of feeding in the first stage,” he added.

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