SPCA Busy with Wildlife Rescues!

April 24, 2020
By: SPCA Communications Manager Bethany Kloc

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the SPCA’s Wildlife Department is asking community members with wildlife concerns to call them before bringing an animal in to help determine if what they’re seeing is an emergency. Information can be found on our COVID-19 Response page.


On April 21, the SPCA’s Wildlife Department received a call about a Wood Duck who had been hit by a car in Tonawanda. “Wood ducks are a very sensitive species that are easily stressed, so we have to be especially careful with this bird,” said Wildlife Department Director Barb Haney. “When he was brought in, we took an X-ray and found that he had a broken radius, a wing bone. We’re caring for him now and we’re hopeful that he’ll make a quick recovery so we can release him back to the wild as soon as possible.”



On April 22, a crow was admitted to the Wildlife Department after a good Samaritan found the bird tangled in fishing line and stuck in water. When admitted, the crow was tired and very wet, and luckily, none of his bones were broken. The fishing line was immediately cut off, and he was given pain medicine and food. He rested over night in the Wildlife Department. After an examination the next morning, the crow was cleared to be released and SPCA Officers Maleskis and Wlodarczyk had the privilege of releasing him back to the wild!


On April 23, the SPCA’s Wildlife Department Director Barbara Haney received a call from a Buffalo citizen who was surprised to find a bird, who the caller thought was possibly a goose with a broken leg, on the caller’s second-floor balcony. “I asked him to text me a picture and immediately I knew it was a Common Loon — a species of special concern in New York State. The gentleman thought the bird looked like it had a broken leg because of the loon’s anatomy.” Common Loons spend most of their lives in water and walk clumsily on land, because their legs are located far on the rear of their bodies.

Because this is a very special bird, SPCA Officers Maleskis and Wlodarczyk went on the rescue call. Wearing PPE, they walked through the man’s apartment to the balcony and rescued the loon. They brought the loon to Dr. Karen Slote, the SPCA’s wildlife veterinarian and local expert on this very delicate species. “Migrating loons don’t breed in Buffalo and my guess is that he was on his way to Canada. If you see loons in area lakes, they’re just stopping by for food. I don’t know how in the world he got stuck on a balcony but once he was there, he probably had difficulty taking off. He was dirty and exhausted when I got him. Currently I’m caring for him around the clock,” said Dr. Slote.