Death of an emu

To: "birding Aus" <>, "Rehabber's" <>
Subject: Death of an emu
From: Goodfellow <>
Date: Sat, 7 Oct 00 16:45:05 +0000
Hello All
A friend's emu died a few weeks ago.  He was to be moved, and a couple of 
park rangers and a vet turned up to do the job.  My friend thought the 
plan was to sedate him, but the vet decided that wasn't necessary, that 
they'd simply grab him, and while sitting on his back, tie a bag on his 
head, tape his legs and that would be that.

But the bird was thrown on his side.  He was then sat on while a thick 
bag was placed over his head and taped into place.  M.  was then asked to 
hold his head, whereupon she discovered it was 'floppy'.  She says she 
tried to tell the vet but she disregarded her and kept taping his legs.  
Unfortunately by the time they took M. seriously the bird was dead. 

The vet said 'stress' killed the bird.  M thinks he suffocated.  
Recounting this tale to another vet later she was told that his usual 
procedure was to place the bird's head in a trouser leg or coat sleeve, 
so it could breathe, but not see.  She was also told that leg taping was 
not necessary.  

It seems to me that sitting on the bird's side would have compromised the 
ability of the air sacs to expand, and that along with the bag could have 
played a part in the bird's demise.  Does anyone have any thoughts on 


Denise Goodfellow (Lawungkurr Maralngurra)
Specialist Guide
Ph/fax 08 89818492
PO Box 39373

Parap Bookshop
2ndhand and new books
08 89813922

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