Where is Walt?

The baby robins are out of the nests and hopping around behind their mothers. Life is not a Disney movie though. This is the most dangerous time for the young birds, as they have no experience or sense of what might harm them. Their flight feathers are not fully developed so they can’t escape predators as quickly as they might need to.001

They don’t realize how vulnerable they are when they relax in the birdbath.

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Yesterday the Captain and I put some netting over the strawberries because the first berries were turning red. I know from one bad experience many years ago, that birds sometimes get tangled in the netting and can die of exhaustion trying to escape, so I made a point of checking the netting every few hours.

First thing this morning, a mother robin was sitting on a garden fence post and I checked to see if any birds were eating my strawberries. Under the netting was a young robin. It must have walked in at the far end where my garlic is growing so high that I didn’t think I needed to fasten the net down. You see that I now have another board lying crosswise halfway down the raised bed, to hold the net to the ground. But this morning I had to rescue the young bird. He was so light and delicate when I held him in my hand. I could feel his warmth. I’m sure he was happy to fly away unharmed.

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Now the story takes a sad turn. Well, it depends on whose point of view you take. This falcon, a merlin, moved into our area three years ago and has been nesting here ever since. He (or she) fed his/her family tonight and I could have cried when the merlin flew across our backyard clutching a young robin who was shrieking pitifully. I wondered if it was the one I had saved only that morning. The merlin family is happy; the robin family is not.

Where is Walt Disney when you need him?

Nature is cruel.

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48 thoughts on “Where is Walt?

    • It is, and it’s hard to watch when we wish for all of them to be safe and live happily ever after like in a Disney movie.I loved Disney movies, but I think they shielded children from reality and then it’s hard to take when you see how different reality is from the fairy tale.

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    • I forgot about Bambi’s mother. Well, that was a dig at illegal hunting. You aren’t supposed to shoot does in the summer when they still have babies with them.I suppose we are just another animal killing animals. I like steak and chicken but I don’t want to think where they come from and how they were killed. I guess merlins like robins but they have to do the dirty work themselves. I just don’t like to see it happen. Too sad.

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  1. Gorgeous photos Anneli. If only the merlin loved to dine on spiders and snakes plus the many weeds we have to remove over the summer. Ivy and I have been watching a pair of ducks who are nesting near the edge of the pond we like to walk around. I feel the ducklings are hidden or maybe not even born yet. The coyotes are watching as well I believe.

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    • Wouldn’t it be nice if the birds that eat other birds could eat all the things I don’t like to see anyway. I’d have the predatory birds eating rattlesnakes and yes, spiders. Then we’d have to make sure something ate whatever the spiders eat or we’d be overrun by those, and then….uh-oh,,, it’s not so easy messing with the balance of nature.

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  2. I hate to push “like” but I did. I also think Walt allowed Bambi’s mother to be killed, along with other special characters in his Disney films. Oh it would have been sad to hear the pitiful cries. Smiles, Robin (hugs)

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    • But who ever said life is fair? I ask myself that many times. We wish it could be, but it’s really not.I suppose I shouldn’t have shared an unhappy story, but that’s one thing about the kind of person I am. I share the good and the bad because I’m a realist, even though sometimes it’s not so pretty. I have friends who shut their ears and eyes if I say something that isn’t all roses. They say they’re too old to hear the sad things in life. But then, aren’t we fooling ourselves if we only want to hear pretty truths?
      Anyway, thank you for hanging in there with me. Life is just like that.

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  3. Sniff, sniff. This is too sad. BTW, Walt pretty much showed nature as it happened. I was never a Disney fan, because as a child, I didn’t feel I needed to see the harsh side of life yet. Bambi’s mom got shot by a hunter. Just about every Disney character was an orphan. The Lion King’s cub son saw his father get killed by his father’s brother.

    Your robin story is so sad. I’d probably cry for a while if I saw it happen. I remember when a cat I had (Sneakers) laid a half-dead mockingbird at my doorstep. I was upset with her and couldn’t even look at her for a while. Then, one day, the Universe showed me how nature worked. I saw a mockingbird rip a giant dragon fly to shreds. I was supposed to witness it so that I could see that Sneakers was only behaving out of instinct and nothing else.

    Anyway, your garden is looking fantastic. Wish I had that drive and talent.

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    • Yeah I guess you’re right. It wasn’t all pretty. I wonder how many kids saw Bambi and went home from the movie crying.
      I wish everything could be perfect. All animals would eat plants or insects. Oh dear… but I do love eating meat too. Scrap that plan.

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  4. A lovely piece, with beautiful photos. Yes, life can be cruel. A colleague and i were having exactly the same conversation yesterday when we found a baby bird who had fallen from its nest. I don’t have any consolation or wisdom to share right now on this, but it’s something to reflect upon for sure. Oh Walt…. H x

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    • Thanks for your comments and for visiting. Always good to hear what other people think. It would be hard to see that baby bird that fell out of its nest. If it didn’t hurry up and find strength, it would easily become a victim. That would be reality but hard to look at.

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  5. Your photos are spectacular. We love watching the birds in our yard, and have several bird feeders and suet and hummingbird feeder. A particular ruby-throated hummer is a frequent guest. I don’t often see the ‘ugly’ part of nature, which is all around us. But I think most of us just enjoy the gorgeous bird calls (which wake us at 4:30 a.m. now), and the last good-bye tweets as darkness descends. The rest of today, though, I’ll be mourning that sweet little robin. Sigh. But it’s better to have our eyes opened in wisdom than closed in naivety.

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  6. I have two birdfeeding stations and a birdbath, but I haven’t refilled the feeders since the Cooper’s hawk came to visit and now with the merlins here permanently, I’m afraid to attract songbirds to the feeders and make them easy pickings for the falcons. It was rare to have the hawks and falcons around until a few years ago and they seem to have moved into the area now. I feel the same as you – love to see and hear the birds – but I had to stop putting my songbirds at risk (for the time being anyway). If the predators move on, I’ll refill the feeders. I really like the way you phrased it “eyes opened in wisdom than closed in naivety.” (The merlin is shrieking away as I write.)

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  7. That is so sad. I know the raptors need to eat and so many people love to watch them catch something but not me. Unlike normal people, I don’t like having baby birds in my yard. I’m always afraid what might happen so I’d rather not see them at all. The fact that the baby robin was crying pitifully is the worst part of all…sudden death is one thing, tortured not so much.

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