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Recent heatwave results in ‘patient’ spike at Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society

Comox Valley non-profit overwhelmed with baby birds and other animals

The hospital staff and volunteers at the Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society (MARS) have been flat-out for the past weeks with a huge influx of baby birds and other animals, caused in part by the recent heatwave.

Some nests were abandoned, while in others overheated nestlings jumped from nests in direct sun before they were mature enough, and many birds in nest boxes suffered heat exhaustion.

MARS received over 60 birds during the heatwave, including 16 swallow and six eagle nestlings.

“We presently have 14 eagles in treatment for a variety of traumas,” said volunteer Jane Thomson in a press release. “Apart from the heat problems, many birds and other animals (particularly young ones) at this time of year come in with injuries caused by cats and off-leash dogs. These animals require extensive treatment with antibiotics apart from dealing with other traumas. Please help our wildlife by ensuring your pets are kept under control.”

Visitor Centre open

MARS Wildlife Rescue Visitor Centre is open! Come out and see what’s on display Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.., and explore the wildlife-themed gift shop. Guided tours to visit the MARS ambassador birds are also available for booking at

Many ways to donate, get involved

MARS is grateful for the donations it has been receiving of recently-expired medications, towels and blankets, garden produce, eggs, wild berries, browse and other food. These can be dropped off at the table in front of the hospital, which is the next building after the Visitor Centre. MARS depends on volunteers for animal transport and trail maintenance along with all the hospital and visitor centre operations, so there is a niche for you if you have a few spare hours in your week!

ALSO: BC SPCA rescues 41 animals after gaining access to Lytton