WALLINGFORD– A red-tailed hawk that got trapped in a tree in Wallingford has been rescued and released. It was no easy feat. The rescue happened last Thursday during rush hour along busy North Colony Road.
The bird returned to the wild Monday night after a rescue and rehabilitation effort that started Thursday afternoon.
“We started to hear a little buzz. One of my service technicians had actually set he’d seen a hawk stuck in a tree,” said Todd Perry, an employee at Executive Kia in Wallingford.
It didn’t take long for Todd Perry and other employees at Executive Kia on Route 5 in Wallingford to figure out their feathered friend needed help.
Employees spotted the bird stuck in a tree in a vacant lot next to the dealership on Thursday afternoon.
“We’ve seen him for years now. This is kind of his area. He hunts here in the field and pretty much knew it was him,” Perry said.
Todd Secki is a co-founder of A Place Called Hope, a nonprofit that specializes in rescue, re-nesting and rehabilitation of birds of prey. Hours after the hawk was spotted in the tree on Thursday, Secki and his organization were called to help.
Secki scaled the 60-foot tree to bring the bird to safety. He believes the hawk got its feet stuck in a split in the tree.
“There’s no protocol for a call like this. You come out. You get the call, you don’t know what you’re going to find when you get here,” said Secki.
After days of rehabilitation, the bird was ready to return to the skies — and its mate. Rescuers say it’s important to release these birds to their natural setting because they co-depend on their mates.
Secki and volunteers from A Place Called Hope spotted the hawk’s missing mate over the skies before his release into the wild.
The hawk appeared to fly as gracefully as ever, after only suffering a few cuts and scratches.
Some say the hawk is lucky to have made it back to its home so quickly.
“The stress alone can actually kill the bird, so that this one made it is pretty amazing,” Secki said.
A Place Called Hope is a non-profit organization licensed through the DEEP and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services. The organization asks anyone who spots a hawk or any bird of prey that may be in crisis to contact the organization through its Facebook page (click here) or by calling 203-804-3453.