wordsfromanneli

Thoughts, ideas, photos, and stories.


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Golden-crowned Sparrow

Sadly, this golden-crowned sparrow is no longer with us. He hit one of my recently cleaned windows yesterday, and reminded me why I had put off cleaning them for so long. He looked so lifelike when I found him in a planter beside the front door, so I thought he deserved to be remembered as he might have been only moments before. I propped him up to sit on the snapdragon stem.

He has dirt on his beak and his feathers are a bit scruffy from his fall into the dirt, but he still looks beautiful to me, except that he’s not alive anymore. I feel really bad when I lose a bird on my windows.

Golden-crowned sparrows have a mournful song, and today I had the distinct feeling that his friends were looking for him.

If you listen to this very short video clip, you’ll hear his friends calling for him, saying, “Where are you? … I’m so alone.”

I heard that awful sound again,

A bird has hit the window pane.

Emma perked up at the sound,

Barked and stood up, looked around.

 

On the landing it was clear,

No dead birds, not far, not near.

Maybe he survived, I thought,

Just a headache he has got.

 

Later as I watered flowers,

Wanting to avoid the showers,

I looked down to place my feet,

When I saw this bird so sweet.

 

Feeling faint, I lifted him,

Knowing that his chance was slim,

Broken-hearted, I could see,

No more would he sing for me.

 

Beautiful, he looked in life,

Wonder if he had a wife,

Soon I heard her calling sweet,

Hoping that her love she’d meet.

 

One last perch upon a stem,

Such a beauty, such a gem,

As his soul wings high above

We’ll remember him with love.


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Deadly Windows

I wonder how often you think about your windows and skylights and the bird traps they can be.

Yesterday the Captain was doing some jobs in his workshop. He had the regular door and the garage door to that building wide open as he was going in and out a lot. After he’d been in the house for a bite of lunch, he went back out to the workshop and saw this little nuthatch flying against the workshop window, trying to get out.

The nuthatch had come into the shop and then, fooled by the light, thought he could get out through the window. He kept flying at the pane of glass, trying in vain to escape, even though the door and the garage door were both still wide open. All he saw was the window and he couldn’t get through it.

The Captain used a soft trout fishing net to capture him and bring him outside. I noticed that his beak had a lot of spider webs on it. The Captain acknowledged that his workshop window is a bit cobwebby.

Luckily the nuthatch was only a bit stunned, and not seriously hurt. He sat in the Captain’s hand for a few extra seconds after I took the picture and then he flew away. I think he was one happy bird!

Do you have a skylight in a breezeway or in the covered entrance to your house? Check it for trapped birds.

If you hang a basket of flowers there, especially pink ones, you’ll kill countless hummingbirds. Even without the flowers to attract them, hummingbirds can fly in and then not realize that the sky above them is blocked off with a glass pane. They will try and try to fly up and out through that closed skylight, sometimes injuring themselves and exhausting themselves until they fall down and often times die.

This fellow is one of the two lucky ones that I helped rescue from a neighbour’s skylight.

It also reminded me that I should have kept my hummingbird feeder up especially in this colder weather. We have had hummingbirds overwinter here on Vancouver Island in the last several years, so it helps to supplement their diet when their natural food is scarce.

Flying up into the sky,

I was stopped and don’t know why,

Up I flew repeatedly,

But it soon defeated me.

I was panicked, I was tired,

Minutes more, I’d be expired.

Holding on for life so dear,

I saw Anneli coming near.

Up the ladder she did climb,

Capturing me from behind

Softly she held onto me,

Wobbling down so carefully.

Dark and warm and safe I was

Then she let me go to buzz,

Back to my own territory,

Now she’ll tell the world my story.

Please beware the window pane

Skylights fool us time and again.

Please don’t kill us with these traps

You don’t mean to kill perhaps.

But we birds are easily tricked

By the choice of panes you’ve picked.

Meanwhile we’ll be careful too

Knowing what these panes can do.