Hurricane Dorian Bahamas Lino Davis
Sisserou, Hurricane Maria Paul Reillo

Hurricane Maria San Jose PR Maria Erika Velez


Many psittacine species inhabit areas susceptible to hurricane and typhoon. Helping fallen birds in the aftermath of a gigantic storm is very dangerous. Your own safety comes first. Infrastructure will be devastated, possibly for months or years. Entire swaths of habitat will be destroyed. Supplies, shelter, food and water for all inhabitants will be damaged or non-existant.

Entire populations and breeding areas may be at risk, and rescue of even a few individuals may be significant to future population recovery.

Hurricane-ravaged areas are prime targets for potential and pre-planned poaching and exploitation for collector and pet trade, along with potential violence and criminality associated with organized trafficking. Preparation should include planning for personal safety from violence.

What to Expect

Expect birds to have severe blunt force trauma and crushing injuries, hypo- and hyperthermia, near-drowning, chemical exposure, toxicity and chemical burns, electrocution, dehydration, starvation, social anxiety, anthropogenic harassment and persecution, entrapment, and a multitude of unexpected difficulties. Infectious disease and malnutriton are sequels to severe injury and stress-related immunosuppression.

What to Do

  • Capture and contain injured birds

  • keep them in a warm, dry, safe and secure environment

  • do not force water or food

  • warm water can be gently dropped along the tomia (edges of upper and lower beak) to encourage normal licking and swallowing

  • once water is accepted, warm sugar water (1:4 sugar to warm water) can be alternated

  • do not offer free-access water until they are able to regain normal posture

  • offer food only after they are hydrated

  • contact appropriate rescue if/when possible

  • minimal handling and refrain from :staring at them all the time"

  • visual or audible contact with other birds is desirable

  • ambulant and non-aggressive birds may do better in small groups (5 or less)

Likely Outcomes

  • severe injury and hypothermia generally do not lead to good outcomes

  • many birds will have fatal injuries

  • expect a high mortality rate on birds that are found down on the ground and docile

Emergency housing

Emergency Care

Remote feed and water stations

Decision Trees and Flowcharts