July 15, 2009
Earlier this season at White Wolf we had an Oregon Junco that had been banded wrong in a previous year because someone did not use the leg gauge to determine the right size. Its right foot had died and we had to amputate so it would not get infected. It was a really sad day, especially because Jeff said he has never recaptured an amputee. We didn’t even have the heart to band the other leg. Today made the situation a little better because we recaptured the amputee junco. His leg was completely healed over with no signs of infection. The bird did not seem to be greatly impacted by missing a foot; he even had a cloacal protuberance (breeding characteristics). It made us so happy that he was alive and doing well. I sent him away with a shiny new band (this time correctly size and attached) on his left leg. He even perched on a nearby tree with ease. Go Juncos!!!