African Harrier Hawk
Photo Credit: FreeMe Wildlife

After it faced a devastating pellet gun injury, an African Harrier Hawk found itself unable to fly and in great pain. But, thanks to many acts of kindness, this story has a happy ending!


KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa (03 June 2024) — An African Harrier Hawk found itself painfully grounded in a garden earlier this month where it was struggling along with a shattered bone and an infection.

Luckily for the African Harrier Hawk, a kind and thoughtful person named Josh got in contact with FreeMe Wildlife—the fantastic team of animal heroes who you might recall from The Tortoise Project. 

The team were soon off to Pietermaritzburg’s Athlone to see where they could help, what had happened to the mighty bird, to kickstart the road to recovery.

Josh and the African Harrier Hawk

The initial suspicion of a pellet wound was confirmed at Umgeni Veterinary Clinic where x-rays revealed that the bird’s wing had been shot at, and its ulna shattered.

“This means that this beautiful bird, thanks to the incompetence of some irresponsible person, was grounded and in excruciating pain from a shattered bone and infection. Unable to fly, it had to walk around trying to seek cover, without food or water, for safety over a few days,” FreeMe Wildlife said. 

But the FreeMe Wildlife team is nothing if not dedicated to giving our wildlife as much of a fighting chance as possible, and so the road to recovery was underway with a healthy dose of cautious optimism! While the team did not know if it would be safe to return the bird to its home and territory, very good news came in over this past weekend.

Check-ups at the vet

The African Harrier Hawk has made its recovery, with Dr Maggie Roach from the vet expressing to the team that its wing had regained full movement!

Because of this, the FreeMe Wildlife team are confident that the bird will be able to be released soon.

It’s a happy ending but one that very well could’ve gone the other way if it wasn’t for Josh’s kindness, the wildlife heroes’ determination and Dr Roach’s care. To some it’s just a bird fallen from the sky, but to many more it’s a series of small acts of kindness that played their part in righting a wrong and healing a precious wildlife.

Sources: FreeMe Wildlife 
Don’t ever miss the Good Things. Download the Good Things Guy App now on Apple or Google
Do you have something to add to this story? Please share it in the comments or follow GoodThingsGuy on Facebook & Twitter to keep up to date with good news as it happens, or share your good news with us by clicking here or click the link below to listen to the Good Things Guy Podcast with Brent Lindeque – South Africa’s very own Good Things Guy. He’s on a mission to change what the world pays attention to, and he truly believes there’s good news around us. In the Good Things Guy podcast, you’ll meet these everyday heroes & hear their incredible stories:

Or watch an episode of Good Things TV below, a show created to offer South Africans balance in a world with what feels like constant bad news. We’re here to remind you that there are still so many good things happening in South Africa & we’ll leave you feeling a little more proudly South African.


Facebook Comments

About the Author

Ashleigh Nefdt is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Ashleigh's favourite stories have always seen the hidden hero (without the cape) come to the rescue. As a journalist, her labour of love is finding those everyday heroes and spotlighting their spark - especially those empowering women, social upliftment movers, sustainability shakers and creatives with hearts of gold. When she's not working on a story, she's dedicated to her canvas or appreciating Mother Nature.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *