Written by Dan Lubniewski of California
I am known as the “Birdman of Long Beach.” I found my calling and have rescued and doctored over 3,000 pigeons on the street since 2005 and it’s not always easy for others to understand.
In a big lot where I fed and took care of hundreds of pigeons every day that were like family to me and that trusted me with their life, there were three gang-looking guys, about 17 or 18 years old, who threw a rock into the flock of pigeons hitting one and making him bleed. Then the guys decided to come and take a look at their accomplishment and probably would have stomped the little guy to death if I had not grabbed him in my hands before they got there.
I stood up and said, “You know this pigeon could have babies in a nest needing him to feed them.” I think I stupidly said something like, “Wow, three big tough guys can hurt a little pigeon, why don’t you fight a man.”
Only God knows how I got away with that. Maybe it was because of the hat I was wearing that said, “Marine.” Perhaps that made them realize they would not hurt me as easily as this defenseless little pigeon and they walked away. I was able to save the pigeon’s life.
Saving ‘Invisible’ Victims
Last week I was sent to rescue a pigeon with his toes tied on both feet. One of his legs was tied really badly and turning white on busy Pine Street in downtown Long Beach. Three guys around my age and a woman were sitting at an outside table having coffee across from Starbucks. One of the men said something stupid about having a knife and I ignored him. Then he said something about putting the pigeon in a microwave. I said,”I will put you in a microwave. Pigeons are decorated war heros and I know that you were not.” That put an end to the taunts and I was able to save the pigeon’s leg and will take him back to his home in a few days.
In my eight years of rescue work, I have accomplished a lot and I am on the U.S. Animal Rights Hall Of Fame Nominee List with names like Bob Barker, Betty White and Paul McCartney to name a few. I am proud that all my hard work and sacrifice has made an impact on getting pigeons some of the respect they really deserve. Few people ever cared about giving me a donation and I always figured it was because I save pigeons.
I only get about a thousand dollars a month from a disability pension from the Marines and no food stamps to cover my whole life. It’s expensive with bird seed, medicines and cat food because me and my pitbull Babygirl also have been going out at night feeding homelesss cats for years. We also spayed/neutered many of them and continue to do so. If anyone has the heart to help, it would truly be appreciated. Every penny I get goes to rescue, and because of it, I could never afford a car. And even if I had one I could not afford to put gas in it. I do not add luxuries to my life that would take away from my rescue work, which God chose and blessed me to do.
A Few Words About Dan’s Special Rescue Work
The Harmony Fund recently helped Dan provide emergency veterinary care to a badly injured calico cat. He tended to her with tremendous compassion and today the little calico he calls “Honey” is doing wonderfully. We’d like to do more to sponsor Dan’s bird rescue work as he has a constant influx of not just pigeons, but other injured birds which are dropped off to him by the animal control department, with no financial assistance to pay for these patients whose care runs about $225 a month.
Few people in this world would have the strength to take on a mission like this alone. We believe that Dan exemplifies the kind of compassion and devotion that we’d like to see grow in this world. Donations may be made online or by mail to Dan Lubniewski – P.O.Box – 21422 – Long Beach California 90801. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
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