Every Bird Matters
news and views from international bird rescue

Posts Tagged ‘Healdsburg’

February 3, 2008

Frigatebird to be released in Southern California

The wayward Magnificent Frigatebird that was spotted in a tree in Healdsburg, CA after being blown off course by relentless storms in January, will be released back into the wild in Southern California early this week. The male juvenile Frigatebird is in route this weekend to be set free Monday or Tuesday on the Channel Islands off the Southern California coast.

This large tropical bird which is rarely seen in Northern California has spent nearly a month at IBRRC’s Cordelia bird center gaining weight and getting some much needed R & R. It arrived at the center 400 grams underweight and below its core temperature, in critical condition. Today it is 1150 grams, strong and in good health.

This was only the second Frigatebird treated by IBRRC in its 37 year history. Frigatebirds, who are also know as “pirate birds,” usually live in warmer climates such as the Galapagos Islands area. The bird was found along the Russian River in Healdsburg on January 4, 2008 by locals, John and Dana Naber.

Several organizations and individuals participated in different phases including ID, rescue and a month long rehabilitation effort. Many thanks to all the helped along the way!

Recent stories:

San Francisco Chronicle

See the video report

IBRRC’s website page on the Magnificent Frigatebird

January 23, 2008

Frigatebird treated at IBRRC makes the news

Nice article by Peter Fimrite on the front page of today’s San Francisco Chronicle about the Frigatebird found in Healdsburg and now being treated at IBRRC in Cordelia:

“A giant tropical bird – a type rarely, if ever, seen in the Bay Area – got stuck in the vortex of a hurricane-force Pacific storm this month and took a dizzying Wizard of Oz-like ride hundreds, maybe thousands, of miles off course.

That’s the theory of how it ended up in a tree in Healdsburg.

The gangly, feathered galoot with a hooked beak and wingspan topping 7 feet is recovering at a Bay Area animal rescue center after a couple of bird watchers spotted it in the tree and knew right away that it was alien to Northern California.

It was positively identified Tuesday as a male juvenile magnificent frigatebird, known scientifically as Fregata magnificens. The species is known to inhabit the tropical Atlantic, the Caribbean and Cape Verde Islands. Although frigatebirds breed along the Pacific coast as far north as Mexico, they are most at home in steaming hot equatorial regions like the Galapagos Islands.

“In our entire 37 years, we’ve never treated one in Northern California,” said Monte Merrick, a wildlife rehabilitator for the International Bird Rescue Research Center, in Cordelia. “There have been sightings, but those sightings are rare.”

Read the complete story

See the video report

IBRRC’s website page on the Magnificent Frigatebird