What I Will Take Away From Tri-State

Vulture plate. 6-10 pieces of chopped up chicken breast, 6-10 pieces of old fish (any will suffice), one quarter cup of soaked dog kibble, 1-2 egg yolks, and 1/2 tablespoon VitaHawk sprinkled on top. Songbird platter. A layer of dog kibble topped off with a couple spoonfuls of crushed grapes sprinkled with a little bit of egg yolk. If nothing else, I will take away these recipes, which have been ingrained in my head, from my time volunteering at Tri-State. The only problem is that there is a 99% chance I will never have to make them again after tomorrow.

It’s strange to think that tomorrow is the final day I will have to wake up at 6:45 and make the 45 minute drive down to Newark, Delaware. It’s the last time that I will be putting out bird feeders with the bitter wind biting my fingers early in the morning. It’s the last time that I will be preparing food stuffed with meds for birds in need. It’s the last time that I will be sweeping floors and cleaning dishes, that is, of course, assuming I don’t get wash for my next work job rotation!

Most of all though, I am going to miss working with the other volunteers to quickly come up with a strategy for cleaning a cage while a bird is temporarily being inspected by the veterinarian. While the cleaning is stressful in the moment because of the time constraint, there is something especially satisfying afterwards when we can all come together and laugh about how we somehow managed to defy the odds. The bird that I am specifically thinking of is a 4th year Bald Eagle, which is pictured below. What’s different about a 4th year from the common adult eagles you guys probably think of is that a 4th year eagle has a dark grey/white head because it hasn’t fully matured, which is indicated by the color of the eagle’s head. The traditional adult eagles, which all of you probably think of, have completely white heads. Here is a picture of a 4th year Bald Eagle.

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