Better facilities improve bird care at CROW

Tue, 17 May 2011

‘The upgrade of the facilities have allowed us to better monitor the care we give to our bird patients' -CROW Director

Progress Report 1: Bird Cage Centre Upgrade

The Centre for Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) works to protect and rehabilitate orphaned and injured wild animals and birds. This project aims to upgrade the centre’s bird cage facilities to accommodate the variety of birds taken in by the organisation. Upgrades include adding a baby room, building cages, repairing the aviaries enclosure as well as upgrading and equipping the ICU bird room.

The first report covers the period between November 2010 and March 2011.

Activities and Outcomes

The majority of the work planned has been completed, and the project has begun to show very encouraging results. A comparison of the number of the period from November 2010 to January 2011 with the same period in the previous year shows a 23% increase in the number of admissions, a 60% increase in the number of birds released and a 26% decrease in the number of deaths.

The organisation attributes this directly to the changes brought about by this project. These changes include:

  • Building work for the additional baby room has been completed. The additional room will allow for more birds to be accommodated at the facility. The floor and bottom half of the walls were painted with epoxy coating (as used in hospitals). By using epoxy rather than tiling the room, CROW saved R2 540.
  • Two temperature controlled incubators have been purchased.
  • New table tops have replaced the old rusting surfaces in the ICU quadrant. The new tables are also being used during the day to place bird cages so the birds can soak up the sun.
  • Wire and cement were purchased to repair the aviaries. The organisation also received a wire donation saving them R3 662.


The total cost of this project was R70 835, of which SASIX contributed R26 285. SASIX funds have been paid out in full.

DescriptionTotal BudgetTotal Expenses to date
Project Manager5 0005 000
Builders work15 64013 100
Equipment/Capital Goods31 50012 340
Consumables17 92914 258
Administration expenses775775
TOTAL70 83545 473

The wire donations and painting the baby room created a saving of R6 202. The organisation would like to use the savings to purchase an electronic fly catcher devices and installing an awning in the ICU quadrant. The awning would prevent wild troop monkey for harassing the birds while they are getting the sunshine they need to heal.

The only outstanding items in the ICU bird room are the hotboxes. The original supplier of the hotboxes closed down and CROW is currently looking for a new supplier. This explains why the project is currently running under budget.


Funding for the bird cage upgrade came during the organisation’s busiest period. Since all the aviaries and cages were occupied at the time, there were some delays in repairs and renovations.

Monitoring and evaluation

  • CROW keeps monthly records the number of birds that are admitted, released, and those that die at the facility.
  • A KZN annual permit site inspection report sighted huge improvements to the standard of cages and bird rooms. The site inspection made specific reference improvement in hygiene at the facility because of improvements in cage environments and renovations to the bird room and ICU quadrant.


Most of the upgrades at the facility have been completed and positive results are already evident. CROW cited a decrease in the number of mortalities especially among baby birds thanks to the customisable care facilities. The bird room is now easier to clean leading to improved hygiene at the facility. The remaining work will be completed in time for the increase in admissions that normally happens during the autumn months.