Thursday, July 05, 2007

Oh Baby

Today there were some birds chirping in my building. One of the guys was going nuts because it was so loud. I walked over and the chirping stopped. I stood very still until I heard it again, moved and listened...I finally found two birds behind a propped open door. It was two sparrows, a momma and her baby. The mother was chirping for help, to ward off predators or was crying for her pick one. As soon as I tried to get them, the mother flew away leaving her young's all she could do. My assistant cupped the baby in her hands and I got a box with some holes in it. I had to wave my arms around and herd the momma bird back to the boiler room where her nest is and where the hole in the wall lets the birds in and out.

We have a wild bird sanctuary that's close so I drove the baby over and was overwhelmed by a feeling of.....not sadness really, but....wonder maybe?....solidarity?....irony? I'm not sure.

I thought how the mother tried desperately to take care of her baby but was unable to in the end. Someone was taking that baby to make sure it did well and prospered. When I got to the sanctuary they were so kind and treated that baby so well...trying to feed it and wanting so much to take care of it . They knew what to do, they had the experience, the know-how, the food, etc. A woman came out and said they would "match her up with someone good"...It was sweet but so surreal.Reading this back it doesn't hit me like it did this morning....


-N- said...

Y'know, by the situation you describe it sounds like she was teaching it how to fly. Did it have feathers? If so, that's probably the case, it's usually best to leave them alone if they have feathers but are standing around looking helpless outside the nest. Even if you find a baby bird alone, if he's feathered, Ma bird is usually on the case but watching from further away.

(btw, I'm not anti-adoption! And you didn't do the wrong thing with the bird either way, it's hard to tell what those little guys.)

petunia said...

If the bird was outside I would have put the baby back in the nest - but since the bird was in the building we had to do something else...the momma can fly out the hole in the boiler room but the baby cannot. They will be taking down the nest and this bird was not ready to fly. So sad...sweet little thing.

Emerald City said...

Altho' you state the baby was not ready to fly you also state this baby bird was at the door quite some distance from it's nest.
If the baby bird can navigate like that, then it is a FLEDGLING and will be flying VERY VERY soon.

If you had placed the FLEDGLING outside then the Mother bird would have followed suite by exiting the building as you stated she was able to do. She would have continued in teaching the "baby" bird to fly, capture food..... Once a baby bird leaves the nest they do not return.

Also, for future reference, the human scent on a wild animal makes no difference to a Mother. They will not reject their child. That is a false belief.

Often times people think they are doing the right thing, however they simply make a situation much worse.

That Mother bird will spend a few days or more searching for her "baby" to no avail.

Baby BIRDS, in particular, do not do as well w/ rehabilitators. They should remain w/ their mothers and only removed as a LAST resort. Their chances at survival once released are not as good as other wild animals.

Again, this sounds like a FLEDGING to me. This baby had traveled from the nest in another room, to the door....

~from a Wildlife Care Alliance Transportator

petunia said...

we talked to the people at the wildlife center as to what we should do...the women who took the baby in said it would be another two weeks before she could fly. It had fallen out of the nest and wandered (not flown) up a wall until it found it's way to the back of a door...the mother bird has one or two more she has to take care of and there was no where outside to put the bird out of harms way.....why has this struck a cord in so many people? I have had more comments that I could not publish!