VIDEO: Kestrel chicks released into wild bring a happy end to wildfire season

Work crews on frontlines of worst wildlife season in B.C. history helped save two birds

Two kestrel chicks who got out miraculously unscathed during the Elephant Hill wildfires are now healthy and back flying in the wild.

The two birds – part of the falcon family – were released Friday by BC Hydro’s environmental specialist in Pritchard, near Kamloops.

The pair was found in July, when the lion’s share of the wildfire tore through the dry forests near Ashcroft and Cache Creek.

Hydro crews were sent into the area to restore power and replace damaged power poles. Amid the scorched and blackened trees, two recently hatched baby kestrels were found nestled into a power pole, explained Dag Sharman, BC Hydro’s community relations manager.

The crew delivered the chicks to the Wildlife Park Rehabilitation Centre in Kamloops, where they underwent months of treatment.

READ MORE: Animals rescued from fire line

READ MORE: Dogs stick with sheep through wildfire

But the chicks – now strong and healthy – couldn’t go back to where they once called home.

Because of the damage to vegetation caused by the fires, a BC Hydro environmental specialist deemed Ashcroft unfit for the birds’ basic needs, Sharman said.

Instead, they were released on a hillside in Pritchard.

It’s not uncommon for hydro crews to encounter wildlife, Sharman said, such as ospreys nesting on the top of poles, wood peckers drilling into them and animals climbing them.

But this struck a different chord for work crews on the frontlines of the worst wildlife season in B.C. history – one that left many other animals injured, stranded or dead.

“This was so amazing,” Sharman said. “These two tiny little chicks – beautiful birds – had actually survived the Elephant Hill fire when they found them.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Just Posted

Senior randomly stabbed in Abbotsford mall food court

Woman arrested after victim, 71, suffers serious injuries

Fentanyl-laced meth and phones seized after second prison drone drop

A pre-Christmas drone drop was followed by a second incident in Abbotsford on Dec. 30

Union files human rights complaint over Chilliwack school trustee’s LGBTQ comments

Board and trustee Barry Neufled facing $50,000 tribunal charge over alleged ‘unsafe work environment’

Three companies added to city’s water plant lawsuit

Abbotsford suing companies that designed Norrish Creek water plant for damage from flooded in 2015

Cops arrest man who pepper sprayed them while fleeing

Robert Orr charged with assaulting police officer

VIDEO: Week in Review — Jan. 13

The top stories of the week

Pipeline routing through Chilliwack subject of NEB hearing Monday

City of Chilliwack, WaterWealth Project and local Sto:lo intervenors in the hearing

Stealth work OT, come through with first win

Joel McCready nets winner, Eric Penney makes 52 saves as Vancouver knocks off Buffalo

VIDEO: Southern schemes on stage in Langley

The farce of “The Foreigner”

B.C. Liberal hopefuls begin final leadership push

Five MLAs, one outsider pitch policies to party members

Vancouver Island marijuana producer bought by Aphria in $230M deal

Aphria’s annual production forecast increases to 230,000 kgs

UPDATED: ‘Young, innocent’ teen hit during Vancouver shootout dies

15-year-old Coquitlam boy was in a car driving by the scene

Fraser Valley truck driver killed in Alberta semi truck crash

Young driver was adjusting load on side of highway to Fort McMurray

Drivers urged to slow down during Alex Fraser Bridge construction

Work crews are installing a snow removal system and movable counterflow lane

Most Read