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Last sync:2023-04-30 03:00
Taylor explains the best ways you can help a wild baby bird if they're found out of their nest.

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Hi guys.  Welcome back to Animal Wonders.  I'm Jessi, this is Taylor, and she used to work at a wildlife rehabilitation center.  She would like to share some information about baby animals with you.


Taylor: Spring is in full bloom here at Animal Wonders and that means it is baby season.  It's really common this time of year when you're outside either on a hike or just in your backyard, to find an orphaned or abandoned baby animal.   When you find these animals, it might be your first instinct to run out and to want to help them.  This could be taking them into an animal center or it could be bringing them into your home.  

However, this could do more harm than good, so today I'm going to tell you what to do if you find a baby bird.  The first thing you want to do is to find out whether the baby is a nestling or a fledgling.  Nestlings are baby birds that only have a few feathers and they're still completely dependent on their parents.  Also, they're not able to balance very well yet.  Fledglings, on the other hand, are almost completely feathered.  The only things they still have to grow in are their wing feathers and some of their tail feathers.  Also, fledglings are going to be fully alert and active.  This means that they can start learning to fly.  This difference will determine the type of help that the baby might need.

If the baby that you found is a nestling and it's on the ground, this most likely means that it was either pushed or knocked out of its nest.  Therefore, the best that you can do for it is to scoop it up and put it back in its nest.  If the nest is too high or it was knocked down, then you can place the baby in a small box or container and put that up in the same tree that it feel from. 

Some people are afraid to scoop up a baby  bird because they think the mother will smell their scent and abandon them.  However, that is a myth.  Most birds don't have a very good sense of smell and they locate their babies using other senses.

Once you have put the baby back up into the tree or back into its nest, it's important that you leave the area and make sure that you keep your pets inside.  The parents will be watching for predators so once they see that you've left the area, then they'll feel comfortable and they'll go back to their babies.

Now, if you find a fledgling on the ground, they probably jumped from their nest, so the best thing you can do is to leave them alone.  Fledglings are learning to forage and to avoid predators, so if you put them back up into a nest, they're likely to jump right back out and they could hurt themselves on the fall.  You may not see the parents, but that's because they have to split their time amongst all their babies and all their fledglings could have scattered in different directions.

If the fledgling is too exposed, meaning in the middle of your yard or away from foliage, then scoop them up and tuck them under a bush or into a safe spot.  Once you've done that, it's important to leave the area and again, make sure that you keep all your pets inside. 

Regardless of the age of the baby bird, don't attempt to feed them on your own.  Each species has a very specific diet and it's easy to get it wrong, so the best care they can receive is from their mother.  However, if the baby bird is injured or you're certain the parents are gone or dead, they you can contact your local wildlife rehabilitator and ask them for further help.  

Wildlife rehabilitators are knowledgeable and dedicated and they'll do everything they can to help an animal.  However, sometimes the best option is to let nature take its course.  Just as a reminder, Animal Wonders is not a rehabilitation center, so if you find yourself in this situation, make sure to call your local wildlife rehabilitation center.

If you would like to help us continue to make educational videos like this one, visit us at  Thanks and we'll see you next week.