Thoughts, ideas, photos, and stories.

A Little Help from our Friends


The pine siskins are whirring around in flocks of hundreds, landing here and there on the grass, in shrubs, in the garden, and wherever else they might find a bite to eat while staying in the safety of their numbers. Even the odd Oregon junco sits with them for safety from the hawks who will catch any loners or stragglers.

I feel guilty for living in a house with so many windows. I purposely don’t clean them often, so the birds will see that there’s a barrier of glass. (Good excuse for not cleaning them, right?)

But still, in their frenetic staging maneuvers, many of these little birds hit the glass. Many survive, but this little guy looked in bad shape. Broke my heart! You can see that his eyes are nearly closed, and in this morning’s chilly air, he looked to be in bad shape.

I wanted to pick him up to warm him so the cold cement walk wouldn’t sap the warmth from his tiny body, but it would have freaked him out even more and the last thing he needed was more stress.

I watched as he leaned to one side. If he had a broken foot or damaged wing he would die a slow death.

Some of his friends flew in to feed nearby and he perked up ever so slightly. He turned his head slowly back and forth as he watched them. I was glad to see he didn’t have a broken neck.

Then, as his friends chirped encouragement, he straightened so he was sitting up without leaning. He looked up at the sky, over to his friends on the ground, back and forth. He shuffled his wee legs to lift his body off the ground, and then a miracle happened. He decided he was not ready for bird heaven just yet.

Before I could get the camera turned on again, he hopped up into a nearby rhodo, and from there he flew away.

In desperate times, when we feel that all is lost, sometimes all we need is a little help from our friends.

Author: wordsfromanneli

Writing, travel, photography, nature, more writing....

42 thoughts on “A Little Help from our Friends

  1. I’m so glad the bird flew away, Anneli! He’s beautiful too. I would be hiding in the thick too if another bird wanted to eat me, scary! Hawks are so mean, aren’t they? 😊🥰

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely post, Anneli. Accompanied by the usual excellent photographs. I know what you mean when you say the poor little chap broke your heart – I think there are few things more heart-rending and helpless than an injured bird. But then he came round and zoomed off – courtesy of his friends! Great ending to the story.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. A little bird like this hit the window in our garage door a couple of weeks ago. I was in total shock. It happened so fast. Sadly, there was no saving him. He was gone and I believe he broke his neck. A friend of my son’s took him across the road and laid him over our bank. They used to hit my grandmother’s window all of the time and many died but I did see one or two fly away after being stunned.

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  4. I like your excuse for not cleaning windows, Anneli. I love the pine siskins. They are such cute little nuggets!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’m so happy that little guy survived.
    Here, we’re always worried when birds hit our windows, which happens quite frequently. And there’s nothing we seem to be able to do. Our windows are not (very) clean either, and on some we have silhouettes of birds. But that doesn’t help. And what really baffles us: they even fly into windows with closed blinds inside the house. How can they imagine that’s possible?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know! Maybe it’s a reflection of more blue sky. So sad when they don’t make it, but this one had me jumping up with a little whoop and a clap of hands.


    • Probably because the blinds on the inside turn the window into a very effective mirror as far as the bird’s concerned. And in that mirror is another bird flying towards him – himself actually. But a bird isn’t going to recognize itself and think, “Oh, look – there’s me!” More likely see it as a possible threat and fly at it to attack it. Then bang!

      Liked by 1 person

        • I’ve seen this before where little birds, like the rather pugnacious UK robin, actually attack their own reflection in a window – fluttering like a hovercraft to keep their station in the air while pecking wildly at the image in the glass. Really sad to see actually. You feel you want to point the reality out to them – even though there’s a risk they might feel a bit foolish after being told that. Sort of!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Yes, that’s right. My neighbours had a robin who constantly smashed into the window of a door where he/she saw his reflection. He/She had made a nest nearby.
            At our own house, years ago, we had a cock pheasant who came around regularly, almost as if he walked his borders each day, and part of his walk was our deck where he saw himself in the glass sliding door. He dropped one wing the way they do when they are showing off to each other, and showed his splendour to the pheasant he saw in the glass. So funny. I wonder if he thought the bird in the glass was more impressive than he was himself.

            Liked by 1 person

  6. You certainly lifted my day, Anneli.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A little help from our friends is something we can be so very grateful for. thanks for being a friend! Enjoying the Pine Siskins, individually so much energy and the flocks are so cheery.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thanks for sharing that very lovely story! 🙂 Made my day.
    I had a ptarmigan hit the side of the house last night – he must have been blown against it by the wind. I found him on the roof my truck, kind of looking the same – in hard shape. However, after a bit, he seemed to recover and flew away. I was worried about the ravens coming to get him.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I was able to bring some of them back to life but I had to pick up many dead little birds which just didnˇt make it. It´s always so sad! Very lovely pictures!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh I’m so pleased the little guy flew away! What an uplifting story! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Encouragement is EVERYTHING!
    Love your photos, Anneli. I don’t think we get those varieties here. The altitude keeps a lot of them away, nose bleeds and all. LOL!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Anneli, I loved the ending. We all benefit from a little help from our friends. ♥️

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I hate that sounds of birds hitting the windows. 😦 And even my filthy windows don’t discourage them. I’m glad the little fellow recovered. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Thrilled to know the bird survived. I can remember birds crashing into my dining room window years ago.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I certainly enjoy happy endings! Your photos of the birds are amazing. Thanks for sharing them.

    Liked by 1 person

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