Black Skimmer Successfully Released into Marsh

 
    An injured Black Skimmer – a bird on the NJDEP endangered-species list -– was successfully released Friday morning near Laurel Hill County Park in Secaucus after a miraculous recovery at the Raptor Trust rehabilitation facility in Millington.
 
  New Jersey Meadowlands Commission naturalists Mike Newhouse and Brett Bragin released the bird from a pontoon boat in Saw Mill Creek Wildlife Management Area in North Arlington.

   It flew down the channel, banked left at a bend, and disappeared.

 A pic of a skimmer in action, plus the rest of the story, folllows.


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Black skimmers are medium- to large shorebirds  with distinctive red-and-black bills. The lower bill is larger than upper bill, and the birds feed by skimming the water, scooping up small fish.
    The rehabbed bird was found dazed and unable to fly near Laurel Hill on June 9 after workers at the county park reported seeing an injured bird that looked like a toucan.
   The New Jersey Meadowlands Commission brought the bird to the Raptor Trust in Millington for rehabilitation.  As recently as last Monday, Raptor Trust staff thought chances of recovery were slim even though the bird was force-fed and tube-fed.
 
  But as the week wore on, it began to regain its strength. By Thursday afternoon, they wanted to get the bird back into the wild near where it had been found. The NJMC retrieved the bird and set it free – much to the joy of the Raptor Trust staff.

Link to the NJDEP Black Skimmer Fact Sheet is here:

http://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/ensp/pdf/end-thrtened/blkskimmer.pdf

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