Wednesday, September 01, 2010

What Happened Next

The daddy bird came at his appointed time to take his shift, and to do his morning feeding, only to find the nest empty and his little family gone.
He sat under the hedge for hours, just waiting for them.

I know it's the daddy because the light blue ring around his eye is wider than the mama's.
He was just sitting, waiting, not moving, not even disturbed by me photographing him.
It was incredibly poignant.

Several hours later, as I checked on him again, this time I noticed some little eyes peeping out from behind him. Can you see that little ball of grey down with eyes near daddy's tail feathers? One of the babies survived the attack! Daddy was guarding him.
Hallelujah!! Joy and hope revived.
At least half of this precious little family survived, and somehow that helps.

But what now? The ground is not a safe place for a 2" chunk of fluff. I did some internet research and it said to put the hatchling back into the nest. So with a gloved hand, I lifted him back up. The father bird was very distressed over this and was making a huge ruckus. He was flapping his wings double time and dragging them across the grass. He was in turmoil. That was so hard to watch. I felt like a villain. I'm not sure I did the right thing. I prayed that the father would figure out what I was doing and settle back down.

He did settle, but he stayed in his position on the ground, near the edge of the hedge. He couldn't seem to find the fledgling or the nest. I called the animal control people and asked them what to do, and they told me to watch and wait till the morning. If he still hadn't found the nest by then, then they would pick up the little orphan bird and feed it.
.
Here the hatchling sits in the nest...on the very, very edge. He's peeking out with his beak under the center leaf. About an hour later he moved in to the center of the nest, and looked very content to be there. Ahh, breathe. It's going to be okay, I tell myself.

A half hour later I checked on him again. Alas, he was GONE. Completely GONE. Not hiding under the leaves, not hiding under the hedge and no daddy bird in sight anywhere. Strangely, that soothed me. If that loyal, protective father was gone, after standing watch all day, then I think he found a way. He wouldn't leave without his baby and somehow he just figured out a way to get his baby to a safer place altogether. In chirping bird words, he told his baby to jump and he did and he flapped and hit the ground and they took off for a better place.

I am hoping that with all my heart.
(And I am exhausted.)

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

ALL I CAN DO IS JUST HEAVE WITH TEARS. I WAS SO ENJOYING YOUR STORY. IT IS HARD TO BE SO TAKEN WITH JOY ONLY TO HAVE IT DESTROYED. EVEN WHEN JOE IS AWAY! SIMPLE AS IT SEEMS I PRAY THAT DAD AND BABY ARE SAFE. SO SO SORRY. XOXO SHARON

Anonymous said...

This made my heart ache. Thinking of you,
Love, Niki<><

Robin said...

I so hope they are safe, too. It must have been very confusing for the papa, not to have anyone to leave in charge while he left for food.

karen gerstenberger said...

I'm so very sorry to read this. I read your other postings about them and I could feel your hope and joy in the beauty of nature. This is a very cruel thing for you to have to witness, particularly at this time. Nature can be very cruel, and I'm sorry.
On the other hand, I'm joining in your hope for the papa and baby. Maybe there are others, hiding, too, and they will find one another. If they mate for life, perhaps they would find a way to reunite. Miracles do happen.
A miracle happened today: I met Chris. I have this feeling now that we must all meet, somewhere, somehow. That fellowship is such a blessing. I want to share it with you and Robin, too.
Sending much love and hugs to you, dear, tender-hearted Karen.

Anonymous said...

The Father watches over each one of us and one day we will be taken to a better place too...heaven. Our hope is in the Father and his promise.

Love you Karen - vi

Anonymous said...

BTW - you have two very precious girls - what sweethearts they are to take care of their mama:)) Love you Merz and Wannie