What To Do If You Found Sick or Injured Songbirds

Protect Yourself

Wear gloves. A net is very useful for capturing animals that will try to flee or fly.

Prepare a Container

A shoebox with air holes in the lid, lined with a small cloth or paper towel works for most songbirds.

Put the Bird in the Box.

Cover the bird with a light cloth and gently put it in the box or crate.

Keep it Warm

If the bird is cold, put one end of the shoebox on a towel over a heating pad set on low. You can also warm up a water bottle and wrap it with a towel to provide warmth. Make sure the bottle is secure and will not roll onto the animal.

If You Can’t Transport It Immediately

  • Keep the bird in a warm, dark, quiet place.
  • Do not give it food or water. Feeding an animal an incorrect diet can result in injury or death. Also, a captured animal will get food and water stuck in its fur/feathers potentially leading to discomfort and hypothermia.
  • Do not handle it. Leave the animal alone. Remember human noise, touch and eye contact are very stressful to wild animals.
  • Keep children and pets away from it.

Transport the Bird

For further assistance on where and how to transport, please refer to the "Who to Call for Help" section on this page.

During transport, keep the bird in the box or crate, keep the car quiet (radio off).