ROANOKE, Va. – The Southwest Virginia Wildlife Center released two birds back into the wild Thursday afternoon.
The birds were different species: an American Kestrel and a Green Heron.
The female American Kestrel was brought to the center from Lebanon, Virginia back in August. American Kestrels are now a species of concern in Virginia, along with other states, due to its sharply declining population as a result of insecticides and pesticides.
On the other hand, Green Heron was brought to the Southwest Virginia Wildlife Center of Roanoke from the Wildlife Center of Virginia. The center says when it was found, hawks were attacking it. This bird is in a steep decline, with 68% of its population lost since 1966.
The center said it is rehabilitating six herons this year—an unusually high number.