The extreme heat wave in the Pacific Northwest in late June that left hundreds of people dead and cooked up to 1 billion sea creatures alive also caused dozens of baby hawks to hurl themselves out of their nests.
“They had no choice,” Oregon wildlife rehabber Lynn Tompkins told the East Oregonian. “It was just too bloody hot to survive.”
Tompkins’ wildlife rehabilitation center, Blue Mountain Wildlife, took in around 50 nestling hawks too young to fly that had launched themselves earthward in a desperate bid to escape the heat. The scorching temperatures were just one example of climate-change-related extreme weather in recent weeks.
Thirteen of the chicks had to be euthanized because their injuries were so severe. A blog post from the rehab center noted that the surviving birds were doing well and “eating an incredible amount of food.”
Similar things happened in British Columbia, where OWL Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society experienced a “new high” when it came to baby birds in distress.
“We’re about 140 birds over this same period last time,” rehab center general manager Rob Hope told CTC News Vancouver. “Unfortunately the little guys, because it got so hot, they had no choice but to try and cool off and they were getting themselves into trouble. They were falling out of the nest, jumping out the nests and a lot of the babies we did get unfortunately there were siblings that had perished within a few groups.”
He added that the affected birds were primarily falcons, hawks and bald eagles.