Rock firefighters were called this morning (June 19) to rescue a baby bird stuck in a storm drain near eastbound Hwy. 141 close to Jeffco Boulevard.
At about 10:30 a.m., a woman called House 1, at 1533 Jeffco Blvd., to report that a killdeer chick was stuck in the storm drain, said Al LaPointe, battalion chief for the Rock Community Fire Protection District.
A killdeer is a type of plover and has a large, round head, large eyes and a short bill, according to the website allaboutbirds.org.
The woman who called Rock Fire spotted the bird when she was coming out of the CVS Pharmacy, 2120 Lone Star Drive, LaPointe said.
“I give her the credit,” LaPointe said. “She was coming out of the CVS and saw a couple of birds huddled around the area near the storm sewer. She saw the little, baby bird down there.”
LaPointe said he responded to the scene first to see what he could do, and once he saw the chick was stuck in the storm drain, he called a unit to rescue it.
The unit arrived at about 11 a.m., and an Arnold Police officer blocked the right lane of Hwy. 141, while the firefighters rescued the chick, LaPointe said.
He said it took about 5 minutes to remove the storm drain, get the chick out and put the drain back in place.
“(The chick) was pretty scared and anxious to get out,” LaPointe said.
He said that while firefighters were trying to get the chick out, other birds kept flying around them to get to the lost bird.
LaPointe said after the chick was removed, it started climbing a hill toward CVS, where he believes it was reunited with the birds that had been hovering around the storm drain during the rescue.
“(The other birds) knew it was down there,” LaPointe said. “I sure hope the mama bird or dad came down and got (the chick).”
LaPointe, who was been with Rock Fire for about 21 years, said firefighters aren’t called frequently to rescue wildlife, although it happens from time to time.
He said he was part of the crew that recently freed a great horned owl trapped in a tree behind an Imperial home after it became entwined in fishing line. The owl was freed and taken to the World Bird Sanctuary, where it received treatment and was expected to be released after its wing healed.