Cooper’s Hawk From MBTA Station to Be Released

Bird treated for minor abrasions; release planned for Friday morning

NORTH GRAFTON, Mass. – Clinicians at the Wildlife Clinic of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University today will release a Cooper’s hawk that was rescued from an MBTA Station earlier this week.

The release is planned for 11 a.m. on Friday, December 10, 2010, at the Tufts Wildlife Clinic.

A team of faculty, intern and staff veterinarians and fourth-year veterinary students examined the bird shortly after it was brought to Tufts Monday by the Animal Rescue League of Boston, and radiographs were taken on Tuesday. The bird suffered no broken bones and was treated for a minor abrasion on its wing.

“The Cooper’s Hawk was brought to us in shock and dehydrated from living in the MBTA station, but was otherwise healthy,” said Dr. Florina Tseng, DVM, director of the Tufts Wildlife Clinic. “So often we see birds of prey that are far worse off.”

The hawk had been spotted in the Andrew Square Station and was captured and brought to the Tufts Wildlife Clinic on December 6 by Senior Rescue Technician Danielle Genter and Rescue Services Assistant Manager Mike Brammer of the Animal Rescue League of Boston. The ARL also worked with Birdmasters to cut holes in the MBTA’s pigeon-deterrent netting to free the hawk. 

The hawk received fluids and was kept in a protective enclosure while veterinarians assessed his condition and has since been moved to an outdoor flight cage, pending release tomorrow. Because it is a juvenile bird—and therefore not yet attached to a territory—releasing it from a distant location from where it was discovered does not present a threat to the bird, Dr. Tseng said.

The Tufts Wildlife Clinic treats more than 1,000 wild birds each year, and is one of few stand-alone academic wildlife hospitals in the country. It serves as a regional resource for many veterinarians, health professionals, and wildlife biologists. Skills and knowledge are exchanged through programs of cooperative teaching and continuing education.

The clinic contains all the latest diagnostic, medical and surgical capabilities to house and treat a broad range of sick and injured native wildlife. All veterinary students at the Cummings School are required to do at least one rotation at the clinic, which is funded by the veterinary school and private donations.

Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University

Founded in 1978 in North Grafton, Mass., Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University is internationally esteemed for academic programs that impact society and the practice of veterinary medicine; three hospitals and two clinics that combined see more than 80,000 cases each year; and groundbreaking research that benefits animal, public, and environmental health.



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