Lissie Stahlman, Brookhaven, stated that the great blue heron was captured on April 3. She was taken immediately to the Atlanta Wildlife Animal Rescue Effort facility. She said that the bird’s beak had been tied for several days and it was weak. It collapsed in a marsh area of Murphey Candler Park. The bird’s overall condition is unknown.
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Brookhaven’s Murphey Candler Park whose mouth is closed with a fishing line and hook. This makes it incapable of eating and drinking. Stephen Ramsden is an amateur photographer for the Atlanta Audobon Society. He needs about 10 volunteers to meet in the
Murphey Candler Park parking lot at 10 am on Wednesday, April 3. The park can be found at 1551 West Nancy Creek Drive. Volunteers are needed in order to capture the bird and remove it from the hook and fishing line.
“It just suckers.” Ramsden said, “If it were natural, it’d be one thing. It is disconcerting to know that our intrusion into their natural habitats caused this problem. Ramsden is also a volunteer with Atlanta Wildlife Animal Rescue Effort. He said he has experience
capturing wild bird beaks that have been caught in discarded water bottles or tied up with the fishing line. e said, “We have more birds being killed in springtime.” Dogs running wild are the number one reason. Garbage is the second leading cause. Texas Birds
Ramsden stated that a group of around 10 people
should surround the bird in order to prevent it from flying away. Ramsden suggested that he and others surround the bird with a towel to keep it still. Next, hold the bird with its beak. Then cut the fishing line so that the hook is removed.
If you are interested, please wear muted colors and boots that can be worn in deep water. Also, bring a towel or sheet, gloves, and goggles.
Ramsden stated that great blue herons can cause serious injury or even death to people with their sharp beaks, which are used to stab large fish for food.
He said that the bird is very weak
and would need to be taken to AWARE Lithonia to undergo rehabilitation before being released into the wild. According to the federal Migratory Bird Act, it is illegal to capture great blue herons without a permit. Ramsden stated that he is volunteering for AWARE, which has a permit. More
He also said that time is crucial. He said that the bird was unable to eat or drink for several more days and that great blue heron rarely survives longer than one week without food and water”It has been losing weight every day, and it has been weakening more each day.” Ramsden stated that its eyes are “sunken”. It is terrified, Ramsden said.
Ramsden visits the Murphey Candler Park on 135 acres
The “fish” was actually an imitation of a fishing lure. Its hooks were embedded in the beak’s bottom. Ramsden stated that more than a dozen feet worth of fishing line is wrapped around the beak.
He said, “I’ve seen it before, unfortunately.”
A friend and he tried for around an hour to capture the bird that day, but the bird kept flying away from them when they were close. Ramsden stated that he has returned every day since then, but the bird is strong enough to fly far enough to escape capture.
Ramsden stated that fishermen who fish in Murphey Candler Park’s lake often cut their fishing lines or leave their line on the bank, and they eventually make it into the lake. Ramsden stated that sharp lures that resemble small fish can make hungry birds a prime target and could lead to what happened to this heron.
He said, “Practically every year, a great
blue heron gets tangled and dies.” It’s not a rare bird, but people don’t notice it until it is gone. He said that a little care and consideration can make a big difference if people don’t throw away their garbage. Birds can be saved every year by taking the smallest step to care for them.
Brookhaven resident Lissie Stahlman hopes that city officials will regulate the use of lures at the lake. She said that the great blue heron caught in its beak may have had several hooks. She said, “This is so tragic.” He’s been watching and moping about. It’s human-caused just like almost everything else that affects our environment.
The Murphey Candler Park Conservation hosts three locations for the annual Sweep the Hooch. This event cleans up the lake as part of an effort to remove trash from the Chattahoochee River watershed. Click here for more information.