Resist the call of the cute, young Kestrel, photo by Anna Kogut
Alone, helpless, small, cold, clumsy and fluffy… We see a flightless chick on the ground in our garden and many of us go weak at the knees. How did it get here? Where are its parents? Is it orphaned? Has it fallen from a nest? Is it injured? It is cheeping, maybe it is calling for help? We are struck by an overpowering urge: I must rescue it… I must do something…
What should you do when you see a baby bird on the ground? It is hard to resist the urge to rescue. Often people intervene when in fact most chicks should be left alone. Our Spring Alive project is raising awareness of this issue with children and adults throughout Europe, Central Asia and Africa, with this season’s theme of “DON’T TAKE CHICKS WITH YOU!”.
In most cases people misidentify a fledgling as a nestling in need of support, or will take away a nestling when they could be placed in their original nests, or a makeshift one. It’s such a common mistake that the Spring Alive teams across Eurasia and Africa will be spreading these messages to teachers, pupils, children and parents, as well as continuing to teach about bird migration and conservation this season which has just officially begun.
We know it is difficult, but you can see that in most cases it is important that you must resist those cute calls.