All the photos in this entry are courtesy of Frank Taylor.
I just got in a weekly banding report from Frank Taylor. In it was a an interesting account of a first year sharp-shinned hawk that had impaled it's wing on a twig. Frank said that it had healed up with a bit of the twig still in the wing!
They didn't try to pull out the twig, just clipped the ends that were close to the wing. The bird seemed to be doing just fine and they didn't want to stress it out with a trip to The Raptor Center down in the Cities. Frank used to be curator of birds at TRC and has been a master falconer for longer than I've been alive. He knows a healthy flight in a bird when he sees it, and with a high strung bird like an accipiter, letting it go gave it a better shot at survival than time in a rehab facility.
Another fine example of how birds will survive no matter what. It would never occur to this bird that, "Hey, I've got a stick in my wing, I don't feel like hunting and heading south to find food. I'm just going to hunker down and sleep today." Birds just do what has to be done in order to survive. I love that.