A little planning can save valuable minutes in an emergency.
Although any time of year can have weather-related emergencies, spring often brings tornados, floods, severe thunderstorms, lightning strikes, power outages, or early hurricanes, for many parts of the US.
This weekend in February is our Severe Weather Preparedness free tax weekend so I thought it a good time to also give a little reminder to check your emergency kits for any needed updates or additions. If you don't already have an emergency bag or kit of some kind, then definitely it's time to get things organized for the "just in case" situation.
Being prepared ahead of time can be key to avoiding a lot of worries, and can help keep both you and your bird safe during any weather emergency.
Severe weather can often cause power outages so it's always good to have some extra non-perishable bird food on hand for such an event. Include a few bottles of water, as well as some paper towels, and a bird first aid kit. If you don't have a smartphone with a flashlight app, you can include a flashlight with extra batteries. Make sure to have either a carrier or small travel cage and a thick towel or cover. Having some fresh fruit on hand can provide some quick energy nutrition as well as providing a distraction for an upset bird.
If your bird is frightened by thunderstorms, placing your bird in a carrier or smaller cage and covering, can provide the security feeling your bird may need. Placing your bird in the carrier or cage before the weather gets bad, can be especially helpful, as during the storm you may be dealing with a very stressed or panicked bird who might try and fly away, or bite in fear.
A carrier can be a lifesaver for your bird if you need to move quickly to an interior room in your home, to a storm shelter, or even evacuate during dangerous weather events. Emergency items can be stored year-round inside the carrier so everything is always ready when you need it.
Some birds may relate carriers to not so good events such as vet visits. Begin early to teach your bird that his or her carrier can be a cool place to hang out. Make the carrier available to your bird often throughout the year with treats and favorite toys inside. Bird treats and foot toys that your bird can go into the carrier and retrieve can be good training.
It's always a very good idea to have a towel stored with your carrier supplies in the event your bird never learns to like the carrier, as it can be used a quick wrap to move your bird from cage to carrier. Don't worry about removing the towel, just deposit bird and towel into the carrier. Birds pick up quickly on human emotion and if you are nervous or stressed by the weather even, then even the bird that is a sweetheart, may be nippier than usual and avoiding the bite will benefit both you and your bird. The towel in the carrier may also provide a snuggle place or even an object to nip at instead of you.
Let us know if there is a must-have for your severe weather emergency kit.
Links to additional information:
US Tornado Climatology
CDC Prepare to Spring Weather
Why is the US a Hotbed for Severe Storms
Red Cross Severe Weather Common in Spring