It is assumed that if you are looking for emergency information at this location that the waterfowl in question is either in your possession or nearby where you can keep an eye on it. The first and most important thing to do at this point is to call a Wildlife Rehabilitator in your area. Your state division of wildlife management, the Department of the Interior - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, your local veterinarian, area animal shelters, state or local police or animal control officer should be able to supply you with information on how to contact them.

You can search the following for your state's government agencies:

Your local Wildlife Rehabilitator will direct you on how to proceed.

One of the most common occurrences for waterfowl is the injured bird seeks refuge either on the water or in a marshy area. This is their natural protection. Usually much effort and many people (adult helpers) will be needed to safely capture the potential patient. Your local rehabilitator can assist you in devising a plan to capture the injured bird.


Do Not attempt to feed or water distressed animals or birds without contacting a Wildlife Rehabilitator - The wrong food or improper watering can kill.

State and Federal Law requires special licenses and or permit(s) to rehabilitate migratory and other birds. Always contact a Wildlife Rehabilitator when you take possession of a wild animal in distress.


 Facts about Waterfowl

All Waterfowl are members of the Duck family. There are five categories of ducks: dabbling ducks, diving ducks, perching ducks, stiff tailed ducks and mergansers.

Fourteen kinds of dabbling ducks are found in North America. They include the mallard, teal and pintail. The most common type of perching duck is the wood duck. The most common diving ducks in North America are the canvasback, scaup, eider and ring neck ducks.

Geese are smaller than swans but larger than ducks. Eight different species of geese are found in North American territories. The most common are the Canada goose, snow goose and white fronted goose. Canadas, with eleven sub-species, are the most common of all in this area.

Swans have an amazing 6-8 foot wing span. Four types of swans are found in North America: the mute, trumpeter, tundra and whooper.

Herons (herons, bitterns and egrets) are long legged, long necked wading birds. Herons are usually seen on the edges of water "fishing". The great blue heron has a wingspread of up to six feet and reaches four feet in height.

Loons are strong divers, able to stay under water for up to a full minute searching for food. There are four kinds of loons found in North America: the Arctic, yellow-billed, red-throated and common loons. They are large birds, up to a little over 3 foot long with wingspans to 58 inches, though are usually seen at great distances. Because of the position of their legs, loons are not able to walk on land, or take off from land. They need great distances to take off on water, but are strong fliers once they are airborne.


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