Friday, October 26, 2012

Those Darn Birds

We have several big windows that look out over our backyard and on most days I love them. Yesterday was not one of those days.

As I mentioned a little while ago, the birds have found our bird feeders. They are right by one of the big windows and I love sitting and watching all the birds chirping and eating and flying around.

There must have been something in the air yesterday because the birds and the window kept having issues. A lovely large black bird flew into the window early in the morning. I was so sad for it. it seemed ok, but I remembered something that my Uncle recently told me- Most birds that are alive after hitting the window are just stunned and if you pick them up and keep them warm they will be fine. Getting cold makes them more likely to die. Whether or not this is true I have no idea, but it stuck with the animal loving side of me and seeing that black bird stunned on the snow made it impossible for me to leave it alone. It was only 36 degrees outside.

I got a towel, wrapped up the bird, and propped him up on the picnic table. I looked out the window at him periodically and after about 10 minutes he flew away, good as new. I was so happy.

I was still beaming with pride at helping save this bird when lunch time rolled around. The large flock of birds, that we now think are purple finches, were still happily eating as the snow was melting and sun was shining when something spooked the flock. All of a sudden I heard a BOOM, BOOM, BOOM, BOOM, BOOM!!!! against the window. "What the hell just happened!" I yelled to the dogs. At least 10 birds must have hit the window at once. Nothing like this has EVER happened before.

I rushed over to the window to see a few stunned birds flying away, but 3 birds looked really hurt. One was flapping around on it's back, one looked like it hurt it's wing, and another wasn't moving at all. The towel just wasn't going to do it. I needed a box now.

So I went out to the shop and got a box, lined it with a towel, and went back to the house to collect the birds. I picked them up one by one and put them in the box and covered half the box with a towel since it was now starting to snow. Within a few minutes one of the birds flew away. I was worried about the other two so I went and filled 2 sandwich bags with warm water (this is the part of the story where Brian started to roll his eyes at me when I told him about it later) and put a warm bag of water next to each bird. Within 10 more minutes one of the other birds flew away.

I waited, and waited, and waited for the third bird to fly away but he just wouldn't. He was sitting up, looking around and seemed ok but he just wouldn't fly. I put some seed in the box with him just in case he was going to be around for a while, made sure the towel wasn't preventing him from flying away and I left him alone. I checked on him every few minutes and finally, after an hour, he had flown away.

It felt good to save the birds, but it felt bad to not have done anything to prevent this from happening in the first place. So many things used to prevent birds from flying into windows are so ugly- and I really like looking out the window.

Then I remembered that my friend Ashley makes beautiful suncatchers out of Angelina and wool (I get my Angelina from GrittyKnits). I haven't made mine yet, but here is Ashley's tutorial. If you don't want to make your own, sometimes she has some in her shop too, so be sure to check out her website. Wish me luck!

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