Originally intended to document my experience of DeLorean ownership, focus is often radical and strange, boring and obtuse.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

An Injured Bird

Holding a small injured bird is like holding a small injured beaked mouse.

Who would have thought that the simple act of opening their back door would result in the chaos that could inspire an Itchy & Scratchy script? Not me. That's who.

Upon opening my back door to allow the kitties to romp in the grass, I unleashed a murderous black beast, known as Roner. She scampered down the hot concrete stairs, chasing a hopping brown blur. The blur turned out to be an injured bird.

After a brief chase, I was able to catch the bird. I don't know what kind of bird this is. I'm totally dense when it comes to these common brown birds. There are just so many, and they're so boring, that I've never been inspired to learn what any of them are. Suzanne told me what it was, and the word sparrow faintly drifts through my grey matter, but now I can't remember what she said. It might be old age setting in. I am 30 after all.

I brought the bird inside to surprise Suz. I named him Sir Birdington. I showed Suz the reason why he was hopping instead of flying. His wing wasn't exactly broken, but it appeared as though the muscles had torn away from the side of his body. There was a round spot of exposed, dry muscle, about the size of a quarter. There was no blood.

Tossed Bird Salad: First, in your kitchen sink, wash the dirt from the fresh bird... Sir Birdington squirmed and squiggled. It was difficult to hold onto him so I dropped him into our sink, where he sat contently. I was hoping he would drink some water out of the ice cream scoop, but he decided to stand on the giant spoon instead, with his left wing hanging low.

We had recently been to the vet because stupid Roner went and got her ears all bit to hell by mosquitoes. She scratched until she bled and we didn't know what was going on. The vet sold us a tiny tube of (insert scientific word here) which is a steroid and antibiotic specifically manufactured for animal use. We glopped some of this goo onto Sir Birdington's exposed muscle and I walked into the back sunroom, heading towards the back door.

Disaster! Sir Birdington shot out of my hands like a wet bar of soap and plopped onto the floor inches from Roner's face.... and I have (almost) never seen anything so scary in my life.

It took 0.2 seconds for Roner's eyes to turn solid black and her claws to shoot 5 inches out of her paws, as she transformed into some bulging werewolf-like panther-thing. Sir Birdington frantically hopped into the corner while Roner pounced. Death was immenent. I lunged at the same moment, and grabbed her normally flabby body directly out of the air. Her claws dug in and she squirmed free and charged again. I grabbed her again, fearing there would be a revolting decapitation in the next moment, and squeezed. Her claws scrambled and she flailed around erratically.

Holding her away from my body, like a baby who was just about to blow milk chunks everywhere, I tossed her into the back hall and closed the door. Sir Birdington was saved! I set him outside and let him hop through the fence into my neighbour's sanctuary-like yard, loaded with bird feeders and other birds.

The SPCA told us they would have simply put the bird to sleep if they came out there. So we did what we could and we now hope for the best. I'm pretty doubtful the poor bird will live. I think we only postponed the inevitable. How do you save an injured bird?


Blogger Ham said...

My granparents were the surrogate parents of many a birdling as a result of the reflective glass they installed into their bay window, responsible for many of the birdie-shortcomings. Their recipe: 1 bird + 1 shoebox + 1 lid of birdseed + 1-2 weeks of nuturing = an eventually semi-healthy bird. You probably did the best you could considering that you also house a Roner-beast.

1:59:00 PM

Blogger Aims said...

Ohh I don't think you can do too much, especially when you have cats. We found a baby bird the other month that had possibly fallen from it's nest, we fed & watered it & put it in a box with some straw and kept feeding & watering throughout the evening, however the next morning the poor thing was dead. You did your best just as we did.

2:03:00 PM

Blogger Rowan said...

you did more than most folk would have.

2:04:00 PM

Blogger Cuppojoe said...

I was wondering... Did you use one of those little plastic sabres that hold the cherries in girly drinks to knight Sir Birdington? And, if so, what color was it? (I'm big on mental imagery)

2:31:00 PM

Blogger Martini said...

Cuppojoe! Maybe that's what happened to the poor bird! His wing was cut from his shoulder in a knighting accident earlier that morn, obviously done by an amateur.

It did cross my mind to try and keep the bird in a shoebox until he healed, but I would have been too heartbroken to find him dead in a day or two. Then I'd have to bury him, and it would just sadden my entire week.

3:08:00 PM

Blogger Chana said...

oh i don't know but i love what you did. my hero. wow, how kind and sweet of you to try to help the birdie. how grateful i am that you are such a sweetie...your dog was just being a dog but that is some story. any chance that your wife caught it on video. AMF would air it for sure, lol...

whatever happens with the bird, the important thing is that you both tried to help. and that is the best we can all do. the rest is out of our hands sometimes...thank you.

11:41:00 PM

Blogger Rainypete said...

For what it's worth, I think that Sir Birdington is sparrow.

If the heartbreak of his eventual demise is too much for you then I suggest you take him for a drive to one of the many park areas nearby and turn him loose away from Roner - consumer of feathery snack animals.

8:49:00 AM

Blogger patti_cake said...

I hope Sir Birdington makes it! I would have done what I could also. Good job!

9:18:00 AM

Blogger Martini said...

Thanks guys. I'll let you know if I find a bird-carcass in the vicinity of my backyard.

11:09:00 AM


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