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Sparrow Nestling/Fledgeling HELP! (1 Viewer)


New member

Please keep in mind that English is not my main language and that I haven't used forums much, so don't delete my post or anything if I mess up somehow.

Yesterday we've found this sparrow youngling in our yard. I don't know what age is he, but he looks pretty skinny to us. He has opened his eyes already and he does have some feathers on the majority of his body except the belly/bottom area. I will add photos.

We don't know where his nest is or how he got here. We have a makeshift feeding elevated (2 meters high) "platform" sort of thing in our yard where we put crumbles, seeds and stuff, so there's lots of bird traffic around here. The problem is there is also a huge amount of stray cats in our area, so leaving the little guy all alone doing his thing was not an option.

His parents we're actively searching for him, so we've tried placing him on higher spots around the house so that they could get to him and feed him, but for some reason they don't come to him, they just sort of squeak around, even where we kept our distance so they won't get spooked, which is a risky thing to do due to the high cats population around here. I caught 2 cats preying while we we're trying to establish contact between him and his parents.

When night came and our attempts have failed I decided to take him in the house. I made him a little nest out of a yogurt bucket and some cloths. But problem is I don't know at what temperature should I keep him at, and I don't have a heat source I can place near his nest. At this time of the year it is very warm where I live (around 30 degrees celsius in the shade during day time) and temperatures don't usually drop below 25 in the house during night time. The only way to warm him up was to use my own body heat. When I hold my hands around him and it gets warm, he does seem to relax, close his eyes and put his head on his 'shoulder' like he was napping, so I guess he likes it?

Last night, every few minutes he would start hitting the wall of the "bucket nest" until I proceeded to show myself to him. Is this usual behavior? Is he afraid to be left alone or something? I also don't him to get used to humans too much, but I honestly have no idea what to do.

Another big issue is feeding him. Not only that he won't open his beak on his own, but we don't know what to feed him at this stage of his life and how often. We managed to feed him by one person opening his mouth with their fingers while the other holds him in place and puts food in his mouth with the tweezers. The problem is when I'm home alone I can't feed him on my own since, unfortunately, I don't have 4 hands. We fed him a fly, some bread crumbs dipped in water and some small pieces of mixed boiled rice with mincemeat dipped in water. Now I'm home alone, and there will be another 9 hours until both of us are going to be home and be able to feed him, and I'm afraid he won't make it till then.

I have been searching info on the internet, but a lot of stuff is vague and very conflicting.

I want for this guy to survive so bad. So please, help me help him. SEE ATTACHMENTS FOR PHOTOS.


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Last edited:

KC Foggin

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United States
Tomorrow morning I would put it back where it was found. Most fledglings when they leave the nest stay on the ground where the parents continue to feed them. Let's hope that is what is happening here.

Hi there and a warm welcome to you from those of us on staff here at BirdForum (y)

We're glad you found us and thanks for taking a moment to say hello. Please join in wherever you like ;)

delia todd

If I said the wrong thing it was a Senior Moment
Staff member
Opus Editor
Hi cyclo and a warm welcome from me too.

Can you put some string around the bucket and hang it from the branch of a tree? The parents may hear him calling.

First he woud need a feed to keep him going. Tinned cat food is a good substitute. You could leave him in the nest if you're on your own. Possibly use some tweezers and hover it near the bill (I usually say "peep, peep, peep" as I approach, which seems to encourage them to feed).

I'm sure you will enjoy it here and I hope to hear about all the birds you see when out and about. Please let us know how you get on.

KC Foggin

Super Moderator
Staff member
Opus Editor
United States
You might want to check out this link:


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