A Surprise Rescue and Release of a Mule Deer

The plan was to go out to dinner for Martin’s Birthday after Susan got home from work and Martin from Hawking.

Once home, they let Cody outside to play frisbee. After Susan threw in it several times, Martin took over while Susan cleaned up dog messes. After spending ten minutes in the front yard, Susan neared the far corner near the pine tree and large rehab chamber and heard something moving. She turned around and saw a mule deer running away from her toward Martin and the gate.

Where the heck did it come from?

It must have been laying very quietly by the tree and they didn’t even notice it in the yard. Cody didn’t notice it either until it ran past them. Martin examined the young deer checking for injuries. It was cut up a bit around the face. It could not have gotten into their fenced front yard by itself so they figured it may have been hit by a car and was stunned or in shock. Thankfully, no serious injuries and someone decided to bring it to the foundation. Since no one was home, put it in the front yard.

Martin put it into the large connecting chamber and decided since it was not seriously injured the best thing would be to release it to the winter range where it could find plenty of food and join another herd. I- 15 and the main street in Cedar City are major problems for the deer trying to migrate from summer mountain range to winter feed, and many get hit every fall, winter and spring. If kept in captivity and as it felt better it would injure itself worse so we drove it out to winter range and released it.

2015 a glimpse of wildlife rescue at the SWF

Dear Friends of the Southwest Wildlife Foundation,
I apologize for not providing updates in the last month. Susan and I have been incredibly busy. Both the wildlife rescue and the wildlife education have kept us running like mad. Let’s see if I can bring you up to speed.

The two baby great horned owls have been successfully raised and released back to the wild about three weeks ago and they are both doing wonderful. All of the baby kestrel falcons have been released, as well as a pot load of sparrows, robins, doves and so on.
In the last couple of weeks, I have received three young orphaned golden eagles. All three of them came from different locations, but the reason they were orphaned were all the same. In late June we had a spell of extremely hot weather right at the time the young eagles were learning to fly. All three young eagles became separated from their parents, ended up on the ground, and were dying from the oppressive heat, all three on the very edge of death. Intensive care, fluids, and food; their lives have been saved and in August they will be ready to be returned to the wild.
Yesterday we released a Swainson hawk into the wild and received two orphaned pigmy owls. That’s how it goes; you release one and your get two. The flow of sick, injured and orphaned critters this year had been constant.
Back to the eagles: there is a common belief among many native people, that if you say your prayers with an eagle feather, the eagle feather will carry your prayers to God. An eagle has over seven thousand feathers. When we have an eagle ready for release, we will frequently seek out individuals or organizations that could use some extra prayers and allow them to release the eagle.
Here is where all of you come in; I could use a little help. I can contact the local newspaper and television stations and tell them I have an eagle ready to be returned to the wild, and the media people will say, “What is this the 15th eagle this year? Martin, that’s not news.” But if somebody rich or famous, or a high profile organization would like to come and release an eagle, then we are able to get the media coverage we need to continue to seek donations for our wildlife rescue center.
So if anyone has contacts, connections, friends that could help put us in touch with individuals or organizations that would like to release an eagle, please let me know as quickly as possible.
Thank you everyone for your kind and generous donations to the Southwest Wildlife Foundation, and a big thanks to all of our employees at Tyner’s Grooming and other volunteers who have given so much of their time to help us care for all of the small birds.
Martin Tyner

Hawk and Owl Release

Good Morning Friends of the Southwest Wildlife Foundation,
Martin Tyner here: for the last few weeks our orphaned great horned owl has provided our weekly updates. This week I thought I’d take my turn. Both baby great horned owls are doing well, growing like weeds and eating us out of house and home. In the next few days they will be moved out of my home and into a rehab chamber where there will be very little human contact, which will allow them to grow up to be wild, beautiful great horned owls.
broad-wing hawk 1We’ve had a couple of releases this week. The most unique was a broad-wing hawk. It was injured on the Southern Utah University campus. His injuries were minor; he was only with us for a few days and then released. Here is the unique part. Just for fun, I want everyone to go on the internet and do a google search for broad wing hawks and ask yourself; how did this beautiful hawk end up in downtown Cedar City Utah?broad-wing hawk 3

broad-wing hawk 2
The second wildlife release was a big, beautiful, female great horned owl that was hit by a car about a hundred miles north in Fillmore Utah. Her injuries were minor. After two weeks of good food she was ready to be returned to the wild.
Whenever I release one of these beautiful creatures back into the sky I fully expect them to head for the horizon disappearing from sight. Of course I’m only human, and deep in my heart I hope for some small recognition: a look back, a circle overhead, a gift, something to acknowledge that the creature that I’ve cared for understands and somehow appreciates the love and care that we’ve provided. I know that sounds a little bit ridiculous, these are wild animals and for the most part they want to get as far away from me as possible. Remember I am the one who inserts a feeding tube down their throat, sticks them with needles, puts in stiches, takes out stiches; to many of them I am this big mean human that just added to their pain and suffering, not understanding that everything was done to help their recovery. So I completely understand when they blast out of my arms and head for the high country.

This great horned owl release was a bit unique. We took the owl about 15 miles north of town to some really good habitat. I got my camera ready. I removed the owl from the airport kennel. As I was preparing to release her back to the wild I held her in my left hand, held my camera in my right hand up to my eye to see if I could get a couple shots of her as she flew away. As I released her I started clicking off pictures as quickly as possible and we watched her disappear over the horizon. Not a glance back, not a circle in the sky, just disappeared very quickly. As Susan and I drove home we felt happy the beautiful owl was back in the wild; one less mouth to feed. It’s now time to clean out the chamber and get it ready for our next patient.
After arriving home I pulled the memory card out of my camera and downloaded the pictures onto my computer. It’s very hard to even get a usable photograph of a wildlife release when you are the person doing the releasing so I really didn’t expect much. Here is the photograph that I took, as the owl flew away she dropped one small downy feather and that small feather danced in the breeze and remained in the sky overhead long after she had disappeared over the horizon. Finding that photograph, a few hours after the owl was released, is kind of like doing someone a great kindness and then a couple of days later, finding a thank you note and a plate of homemade cookies on your doorstep.

great horned owl release 1
If anyone would like to help the Southwest Wildlife Foundation they great horned owl release 2can make donations to:
P.O. Box 1907
Cedar City, UT 84721