Now that the weather is warming up and the ice is thawing, and waterfowl start to return to Alberta, you may see people by the river, feeding bread to the ducks and geese. It may look fun, and you might be tempted to join in, but did you know that feeding animals can sometimes do more harm than good – especially if they are being fed bread?
Feeding bread to waterfowl has been linked a condition known as “angel wing syndrome”, which causes the end joints of the birds’ wings to develop abnormally. Bread is high in carbohydrates and lacks several minerals that are vital to proper waterfowl bone development. This syndrome completely prevents affected birds from flying at all, leading to an early death for many of these animals.
AIWC recommends that people do not feed any species of wildlife, as feeding can habituate animals to humans and increase the likelihood of them being injured by human-related activities.
Think you’ve spotted an injured or orphaned animal? Call our clinic at 403-946-2361! If you have any questions about local wildlife, you can also e-mail us at [email protected]