A special visitor at Le Nichoir

SoraThis past September, Le Nichoir received a very special guest from Dorval: a frail juvenile Sora who had been running around frantically in a shopping mall parking lot, unable to fly. Upon arrival at the Centre, the Sora was immediately weighed, warmed and rehydrated. We assumed that the bird had been hit by a car based on where it was found. The Sora was struggling to walk and could not put full weight on its right leg. Its wing was also broken, and hanging slightly. The bird was also very thin as a result of not being able to fly around and find enough food on its own.

Soras are water birds and part of the Rail family that flies over the Montreal area during migration South. They are omnivores that eat mostly insects, seeds and other invertebrates. Even though the species is listed as least concern, this is not a species Le Nichoir receives often. After having its broken wing stabilized and eating over 1,000 mealworms during two weeks of care, the bird quickly regained its strength, and its injuries healed.

Once the bird began to fly well, it was relocated to one of Le Nichoir`s flight cages. After a few days of exercise, the bird had put on a good amount of weight and was ready for release. Soras live in marshes so it was decided to release the bird in the marsh at Le Parc-nature de la Tourbière-du-Bordelais in Saint-Lazare. Wendy, one of Le Nichoir’s bird care volunteers and a Board member, accompanied the Centre’s Director, Susan Wylie for the release. Deep in the Bordelais marsh was the perfect location: a lush, moist area with lots of insects and vegetation. When the box carrier was opened the bird jumped and flew out of the box like a firecracker. The Sora continued to fly high, well and for quite a distance. A perfect release.

Image courtesy of Alain Hogue – www.oiseaux.ca