It is unlawful to disturb or destroy the nests of song birds or migratory birds.
CASU gets many calls during the spring and summer for "injured" birds. In reality, most of these are fledglings. These are baby birds that are just beginning to feather and have left the nest to learn to fly. They are still being fed by parents. How do you tell if a bird is a fledgling?
- Does this bird have short wing and tail feathers?
- Does it hop on the ground and maybe fly for very short distances?
- Does it call to its parents and open its mouth to be fed?
- Observe closely from a distance. Are the parents close by?
Fledglings are much better off if left alone so that the parents can care for them. They are experiencing an extremely important part of their development towards independence.
If you are really concerned that a cat or other predator may harm the fledgling, you may fashion a "nest" out of the bottom portion of a milk carton or 2 liter soda bottle. Thread the top portion of your "nest" with string or twine so that it can hang in a bush or tree, or nail it to a tree. Punch small holes in the bottom and put some bedding in your "nest" then place the fledgling inside. It will call to its parents, and they are probably close by in any case. It is NOT true that if you touch the bird, its parents will abandon it.