New York City Pigeon Rescue Central
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Foot Squad

Foot Squad Fights the Thread Problem

Foot Squad is NYCPRC's fledgling volunteer outreach that grabs thread / string / hair injured birds in the street and tries to fix them on the spot and release them, though more often than not they need a visit to a vet and a few days to weeks aftercare to ward off infections and bleeding..

By far the biggest problem with this task is temporary housing in NYC for some of the birds to recuperate. If you or someone you know in the city can help out with a spare room please email:

If you have or know of an injured pigeon - post it on the NYCPRC Forum to receive advice adn fill in the form on the "Help!" page
Try to accompany that with photos if you can.

Case Histories
How to join
Foot Squad Equipment

See also "String Removal"

Foot Squad

Foot Squad Case Histories

Foot Squad Thread Removal Case 1
This Pigeon was found suffering at Columbia University..

Foot Squad Thread Removal Case 2 Mr Pidge
AKA "Pillow Foot" get's it's leg fixed at CUNYC in a solo operation by Jennifer..

Foot Squad Tar removal Case 3
Not threaded but foot problems.

Foot Squad Hair Removal Case 4 Hair Foot
A single strand of hair could've cost 2 toes...

Foot Squad Thread Removal Case 5 Rambo
Rambo would've lost 2 toes - One saved.

Foot Squad Hair Removal Case 6 Hair Toe
It's amazing what a strand of hair can do.

Foot Squad Thread Removal Case 7
One of the worst cases ever.

Foot Squad Thread Removal Case 8 Bag Bird
An unbelievable amount of junk was attatched to Bag Bird.

Foot Squad Hair Removal Case 9 Very Hairy Toe
Again with the hair.

Foot Squad Thread/Hair Removal Case 10 PuffToe HairBunch
More hair? Much more hair.

Please Note::

These pictures and case histories depicted are not intended to serve as a tutorial for novices attempting to provide care at home. If you have an injured bird, please consult a licensed wildlife rehabber or veterinarian for guidance

Foot Squad

How to join the Squad

All one needs to do to become a Foot Squad member is:

Be experienced in handling birds.

Find (the easy part - very very easy) a bird-in-need and photograph it

Catch it,

*Fix it, and release it, all the while taking pictures and or video of the process - so that it may be documented here on NYCPRC

That's it - you're a member!

.Our aim is to spread awareness of the enormity of the thread problem Not to dish out Do-It-Yourself instructions - rather clearly demonstrate how difficult it is to deal with

*The "fixing" should be done by a veterinarian wherever possible - as even simple looking thread problems can escalate to fatal bleeding or infection.

Foot Squad members have access to experts to advise.

Send in close up large photos before you attempt to catch and you can recieve advice too. Our experts have seen many feet.

Sorry - we are unable to disclose Foot Squad's vet - we advise you to seek and cajole vets to assist. Most will charge a hefty fee. A precious few will not.

Good luck to you and the birds you try to help.

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Foot Squad Equipment

In Design: A Pigeon Rescuer's Aid - The Pigeon Vice

This Pigeon Vice is to aid the Foot Squad operative in the street.
The device restrains and calms a bird with velcro straps above the chest and below the legs, and a hood that covers the head. The bird is strapped upside down. The bird, in the restraint, is then strapped to the operatives upper thigh while in a sitting position, so that the bird's feet are over the operatives knee. Slip the tools into the slots on the backing material for easy reach while working.
Both hands are now free to work on the bird

The device is still in the design stage - If anyone sees a flaw or has an idea for improvement, make it known on the NYCPRC Forum

When the design is finished and a proto type tested, production of a few can begin. Estmated cost each $40.

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Foot Squad Equipment

Suture Scissors

A most useful device

See the "Supplies" page for more options and details

These scissors range from $3.99 to $100.

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Foot Squad Equipment

Flat Tweezer

Temp dummy picture shown

See the "Supplies" page for more options and details

Foot Squad Equipment

Rats Tooth Tweezer (Tissue Forceps)

Rats Tooth Tweezer has a tiny "Tooth" in each side at the point. An amazing picker. You can't see the tiny interlocking teeth in this picture.
The Ulitimate Picker

See the "Supplies" page for more options and details

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