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Neotropic cormorant saved after being deliberately injured by kids

A neotropic cormorant suffered a broken wing after children at an eastside apartment complex threw rocks at it. Deliberately harming wildlife is illegal.

The water bird was rescued Thursday afternoon by volunteers from the nonprofit Tucson Wildlife Center. The cormorant was swimming in a water feature at the apartment complex when witnesses saw children throwing rocks at the bird.

The bird was brought to Tucson Wildlife Center’s hospital where an exam and X-rays revealed a broken wing.

“His prognosis for recovery and release is good,” said Dr. Roberto Aguilar, a veterinarian at Tucson Wildlife Center. “The cormorant will have to stay at our center for at least a month and he requires a specialized diet, so he will be a fairly expensive bird to rehab.”

Last week a good Samaritan brought two fledgling house finches to Tucson Wildlife Center for care after she witnessed children harassing the tiny birds, who were just learning to fly.

“We have had a couple of incidents in the last week of children harassing and harming wildlife,” said Lisa Bates, founder of Tucson Wildlife Center. “With students getting out of school soon for summer vacation, this is a good time for teachers and parents to remind children to be kind to animals and tell an adult if they see anyone harming an animal.”

Spring and summer are baby animal seasons and the busiest times of year at Tucson Wildlife Center. If you would like more information about volunteering to care for wildlife at the nonprofit rehabilitation center, go to, click on “How to Help” and fill out an application on the volunteer page. Donations can also be made on the website.

Anyone who finds an injured or orphaned wild animal can call 520-290-WILD (9453) 24/7.

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