It was a close call for this kookaburra when she was hit by a car. Suffering obvious damage to her wing, she was brought to the RSPCA Wildlife Hospital in Brisbane.
Named “Velvet” by the wildlife team, she was immediately x-rayed. She had broken the ulna bone in her left wing and had extensive bruising. However, wildlife veterinarian Cameron Reid was confident that he could repair Velvet’s wing with orthopaedic surgery.
“We put the two pieces of bone back into position and implanted a metal pin to hold them in place. Then it was a matter of waiting for a bony callous to form, to naturally connect the two pieces of bone,” Dr Reid said.
The dedicated wildlife vet nurses maintained a regimen of medications and feeding, and after 11 days another x-ray showed the bone was healing well.
It was only a few more days before the pin was ready to be removed, and Velvet was released back to her home, fully able to fly again.
“This was great news because kookaburras are highly territorial birds and can’t stay away from their home much longer than about two weeks without being ‘evicted’ by another kookaburra,” Dr Reid said.