I saw a Canada goose at a pond the other day that had fishing line wrapped around its leg and wing. I wanted to help the bird but didn’t know how. Would you or your staff have come to take care of it?
Unfortunately we receive several phone calls like this each summer. Birds and other wildlife can easily get tangled up in fishing line that is left on shore by anglers. Polk County Conservation doesn’t have the staff, time, and resources to respond to injured wildlife situations. However, there are several things you can do to help a bird in this situation. First, take an old blanket and toss it over the bird so it can’t see you. Carefully grab a hold of the bird and take a knife to cut off the fishing line yourself. Once the bird is free of fishing line, remove the blanket and let it go. In most cases the bird will be just fine. If it appears to have serious injury or infection in the leg, contact a wildlife rehabilitator right away. Call your local county conservation board or the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to get a listing of rehabilitators. You can also help prevent this problem by picking up discarded fishing line found along shorelines. If you are fishing and the line breaks, please try to remove as much line as possible from the water and shore. Remember to take all trash home and throw it away, do not leave it behind!