By the time August rolls around, wildlife rehabilitators are fried. There have been months of late-night phone calls, hordes of orphans, and lots of less-than-satisfying encounters with the public, who, shall we say, don’t always have the best interests of wildlife at heart.

Here is a typical wildlife rehabber near the end of August:









But then something amazing happens. Perhaps a bird you thought was a goner suddenly comes back to life. A surgery with a dicey prognosis is a complete success. The local woman with five outdoor cats finally decides to keep all of them inside. A heroic person goes far out of their way to rescue an injured wild creature.

And you are so, so tired, but suddenly life is so, so beautiful … which means your way of showing joy is tinged with dementia. Who knew that the lead singer for The Trashmen was actually a bird rehabber?


Written by Suzie
Suzie Gilbert is a licensed wild bird rehabilitator whose shameful secret is that on one occasion (well … maybe more than one) she has received a little brown job, or a fledgling whatever, and has been completely unable to ID it. Luckily, she has birder friends who will rush to her aid, although she must then suffer their mockery. She runs Flyaway, Inc. out of her home, and has been caring for injured and orphaned wild birds for 20 years. Why go birding when you can just stroll through the house? Honestly, though, she is wildly envious of birders and their trips to exotic locales. She is the author of Flyaway, her bird-rehabbing memoir, and Hawk Hill, a children's book, and is the sole parent of two teenagers. Never a dull moment.