The Baby Bird–Much less cute in real life
What a day yesterday was!
After the parade (which—with the exception of the Santa Band whose members appear to be some of the happiest people in the entire state—unfortunately did not live up to expectations), I had a Very Definite Plan for how the day was going to go. As I mentioned, we are in the throes of the Great Pre-Graduation Clean and there is a lot to be done. Seriously, a lot. Also a Great Deal.
I had the day planned out in excruciating detail to be sure All Would Be Accomplished.
The Plan lasted approximately 97 seconds.
At first the schedule was upset by General Chaos and whatnot. Since this is SOP around here, I didn’t worry about it and figured I’d make up the time later on.
Unfortunately, the Universe did not pay attention to The Plan. The Universe poo-poo-ed the plan. It might be more accurate to say the Universe used the plan as its own personal poo repository.
Dad found a baby robin on the driveway. The term “baby robin” probably conjures up all sorts of adorable images and cheeping baby-ness. Nothing could be further from reality. We suspect the baby was all of a day or so old and had been ousted from its nest by its mother. (Note: even babies should be respectful of their mothers, O Best Beloved). Far from adorable, the bird looked like a prehistoric mistake. A sickly prehistoric mistake. The type of animal you would look at and say “Only a mother could love” but you’d be wrong because the mother didn’t.
Out went The Plan and in came The Baby Bird (TBB).
Immediately prior to the entrance of TBB, Booker and I had been helping Pi study for finals. Booker’s main responsibility was to have his tummy scratched. When TBB came in, we abandoned the studying and the tummy scratching to look at the critter and stress about our lack of knowledge about how one cares for something that looks more like Watto than a robin.
Jealousy is not a pretty emotion for a puppy. Eventually, we let him sniff the bird, gave him a carrot, and all was right with the animal hierarchy.
Watto. Probable ancestor of TBB.
After a few fairly stressful moments minutes eons, we learned that one can feed recently hatched birds sugar water. We made a “nest” out of a washcloth, whipped up some sugar water, grabbed a dropper and proceeded to act like a gaggle of concerned bird parents. After four or five drops of the sugar water (pretty much lemonade without the lemons), TBB fell asleep.
There is great controversy on the web as to how often baby birds should be fed. The gamut goes from every 15 minutes to whenever they open their mouths (information that is exactly as helpful as it sounds).
Do you remember about my Plan for Cleaning Up? I double checked. Nowhere on the list had I included Worry About Baby Bird. Nonetheless, we proceeded to worry.
How many people does it take to worry appropriately about a displaced baby bird? Pretty much all of Facebook and everyone in the family.
We watched him sleep to be sure he kept breathing. We tried to nudge him awake to feed him. We changed the washcloth when it needed changing. Mostly, we worried.
We managed to feed the poor thing a few more drops here and there and even got an iota of puppy food into him. (Yes, it was a him. We voted. And yes, it was an iota. I measured.)
We built a slightly more substantial nest for him in a flower pot which we took to dinner, where we gave more people the opportunity to worry about him. And the opportunity to try to feed him and keep him warm.
After a fab cookout (who knew you could get so much wonderful food at the grocery store!), Pi and I returned home to study.
Somewhere in the middle of Indochina, we learned that TBB had died. He tried. We fought hard for him. But nature was against it from the start. (NOTE: Pretty much proof that Mom Knows Best.)
Booker is the big winner here as he will get to eat the puppy food we bought for the bird.
The house is still a Disaster Area, and I’m not sure how ready Pi is for finals.
I have got to do a better job of communicating my intentions to the Universe.