How to care for an injured wild bird?

 I'm asking this for a friend; he rescued a swallow hit by a car. The bird acts brain damaged. It can't fly or orient itself, but will drink sugar water. Its wings work fine. 

There are no animal rescue groups nearby that he knows of. He's wondering if he should even keep trying to keep it alive, and is worried that it's suffering. Any experience or advice?

Additional Details
BTW, I did do a search for similar questions, but most were about caring for baby birds or broken wings, and this is a bit different.

Update: my friend just spoke to a rehabber who said he might as well give up. ??? If the rehabber won't take it and he doesn't want to kill it, but it's illegal for him to keep it, what other options are available?

Best Answer - Chosen by Asker

Yes, it should be kept alive! I have rehabilitated many birds successfully, when I was a volunteer with the Avian Rehabilitation Center, and some seemed almost dead when we received them.

Tell your friend not attempt to feed the swallow - they have specialized dietary needs. Do not give it sugar water, or even regular water, as it could aspirate and die.

Your friend needs to get the bird professional help immediately. Contact a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. You should be able to find one here:…

Licensed wildlife rehabilitators have the specialized training to care for sick, injured and orphaned wild animals, and they have the required state and federal licenses that allow them to keep the wild animals until they are healthy enough to be released.

Do not take the animal to a vet - vets are for pets, and most vets do not have the expertise to care for wild animals; nor do most vets have the proper licenses that would allow them to keep a recuperating wild animal.

Your friend should not be attempting to care for this bird yourself. Not only does your friend lack the training and experience, it is illegal. In the US, all native migratory birds are protected under federal law (Migratory Bird Treaty Act), and it is illegal to keep any protected bird unless you have the required permits. Penalties for violating this law include up to $500 and/or up to 6 months in jail for each offense.

Many other countries have similar laws pursuant to the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which is an international treaty, protecting their native species.

Please get him to a rehabber immediately!!!

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