Harry the kookaburra was rescued after being found near the road by a caring member of the public, Mitch. Harry had suffered a fractured wing, he was also concussed and in shock.
Harry’s fracture was complicated and once stabilised in WIRES care he was taken to Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital where skilled veterinarian Dr Bree conducted orthopaedic surgery.
External fixations are a new procedure for Wires NR and will enable more of the difficult fracture injuries to be repaired.
The surgery went well, but then came the difficult time for our wild creatures, the recovery.
It was quite a stressful task for experienced WIRES volunteer Deborah to keep Harry as quiet and calm as possible in a hospital cage for 4 weeks, administering medication and daily checking for infection. He also had regular visits to Dr Bree to be x-rayed and monitor his healing.
Kookaburras can be very difficult patients, but Harry was stoic through it all. He was quite a character and after the first few days seemed to accept that he was being helped by Deborah.
After weeks in a confined space, Harry had healed well but had lost a lot of muscle tone and fitness. He was transferred to a large flight aviary to gradually build up his strength and flight abilities.
Harry had also suffered some broken tail feathers, the time had come for these to be repaired before his release.
This procedure is called imping. It is a delicate and precise skill to learn as the feathers must be the exact replacement and in perfect alignment.
WIRES volunteer Melanie is specially trained in this procedure and conducted the imping at BBWH while Harry was under anaesthetic.
Harry was now fully fit and with feathers in perfect condition, he was ready to go home!
When Melanie arrived on site and opened the transport container Harry launched himself out and flew strongly back to his favourite tree, happy to be home again.
Many thanks to everyone involved, especially Dr Bree, for giving Harry the Kookaburra a second chance at life and to Mitch for calling WIRES.