Tuesday, June 06, 2006

RIP Baby Bird

I'm afraid this post has next to nothing to do with being an eBay storekeep, but it's a story I need to share with my loyal readership (all 3 of you).

Yesterday, while I was working at my computer in the basement, my older son (age 6) came running in from the backyard saying, "Papa, you've HAVE to see this. It's orange, and has gray feathers, and claws and it's really freaking me out."

So, out I went to check out this horrible creature. Turns out that the horrible creature was, in fact, a VERY small baby bird - I almost think it was somehow prematurely hatched. Its two bulbous black orbs could not quite be called eyes yet, and it was blind. Very few puffy feathers adorned its otherwise naked orange body. At first I thought it was dead, surely - then its tiny legs (complete with "claws") twitched, and its feeble wings flapped, well, feebly.

What to do? Unlike now (posthumously educated in the care of baby birds) I believe the old wives' tale that if you touched a baby bird its mother would abandon it due to the scent of humans (completely false - birds have a VERY poor sense of smell). "Mama might now what to do - she has some experience with chickens" I told the boys, as I scooped up Baby Bird in an empty clean yogurt cup. It's mouth yawned open as if to receive food from its mother. My heart broke.

Mama, though, had not much more to offer. She concurred that it looked as though Baby Bird was too early from its shell. She gave it some water, although it was unclear whether any was being taken in. We were sure Baby Bird would not last the night, and we left the yogurt cup on out kitchen table so s/he would at least not freeze to death or be eaten by something.

Amazingly, Baby Bird clung to life through the night, and we again watered the poor thing this morning. However, when the younger son and I returned from our daily morning walk to the post office to mail off the latest eBay sales, Baby Bird had shuffled off this mortal coil.

The plan, constructed by older son and I, is to bury Baby Bird in the back yard with some flower seeds, his/her body to nourish the seeds as they grow. And a marker of some kind to remember the resting place of Baby Bird.

Sorry for the bummer of a post, all. Hopefully next time I'll have something more upbeat to share with you.

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