Grit Blogs > Red Pine Mountain

Injured Bird Helped by Mountain Man

ImageLast night, there was a storm raging outside our house. Rain fell incessantly and the wind howled. Khrysta was dry in her stall, the dogs were in their beds and Mountain Man and I were snuggled under layers of quilts. But what about the birds? Do you ever wonder what happens to them in a storm? The next morning, when I went to feed Khrysta I discovered that sometimes bad weather means trouble for birds.

I found a small bird clinging to a stump in our yard. At first, I thought it was resting but when it didn’t fly away as I approached, I decided to investigate further. I discovered it was actually stuck to the stump. I thought one of its claws was stuck and I easily removed the bird from the stump but then he just fell over on the ground and couldn’t move. I called for Mountain Man. He discovered that some sticky, wet debris had become enmeshed in the birds claws basically binding its feet and wings together. And then, the hands that so skillfully turn logs into art, gently unwound and removed the debris from the bird’s feet and wings.

Poor bird. His two feet were stuck together.

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Mountain Man begins to remove debris from bird’s feet.

It was a time consuming process and for the most part, the bird was very patient as if he realized Mountain Man was helping him.

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Mountain Man continues to work on removing debris from bird’s feet.

But every once in a while, he thought Mountain Man deserved a good peck.

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Bird pecks Mountain Man

It was delicate work.

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Mountain Man begins to remove debris from bird’s wings.

Mountain Man worked on each claw slowly and carefully.

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Mountain Man working on bird’s claws.

There you go Little One. We’re all finished now.

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Mountain Man releases bird.

He’s off and running and after a few steps, he flew away.

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Bird running on ground.

I’m glad this story has a happy ending thanks to Mountain Man, and it’s just another one of the many reasons I love him.

mountain woman
4/18/2010 1:57:40 PM

Oz Girl, It's wonderful you saved the owl!! Yes, it's always so good to know you've helped a creature in need. They are just so vulnerable.


oz girl
4/17/2010 5:10:39 PM

Oh I LOVE your pictures, and I'm so happy that Mountain Man was able to save this sweet lil bird. Reminds me of the barn owl we saved a year ago... he had somehow gotten into our shop and become entangled in fly tape. He couldn't fly away because one wing was so tangled up with the tape. After calling several wildlife centers for help, it became clear to me from the advice they were giving me that WE were going to have to save this owl as they were not going to come out to do it! It was a scary thing, but once we threw a blanket over him he was very still and I managed to get almost all of the tape off him and he finally flew away! It feels so good to save a wild animal's life, doesn't it?! :)


mountain woman
4/13/2010 10:04:32 AM

Nebraska Dave, How wonderful it must be to have a bird serenading you each morning and each year too, that's really remarkable. MM and I met through Eharmony and the first thing that attracted me to him was the photo of him with his arms wrapped around his elderly Mastiff. I agree with your cousin wholeheartedly. Thanks for visiting me!!!


nebraska dave
4/12/2010 8:38:17 PM

MW, I seem to have picked up some kind of bird that has takes up residence every year in CiCi my Cedar tree right by my bedroom window. I have no idea what kind of bird it is. Every morning in the summer just before sun rise as I sleep with the windows open wide, this little creature sings the most wonderful melodious song to bring in the new day. It has the most distinct warble and I’ve never heard anything quite like it. I think I have an angel bird that wakes me to the new day every morning in summer time. You are right about the Grit blogs being a plethora of information and encouragement. All from beginner to master experts coexist in perfect harmony. The black thumb in me has definitely been turning green through the faithful reading of the Grit blogs. My cousin once told me when she was trying to find the perfect date that you can tell the heart of a man by how he treats animals. It looks as though MM as rough a tumble looking as he is has a big kind heart. You are truly blessed for having a man like that.


mountain woman
4/10/2010 5:56:01 AM

Cindy, One of the thing I love about Grit blogs and blogging in general is that when someone writes a post, others share their experiences and then we are all enriched. It's so much fun learning about other people's experiences in parts of the country where you might never travel. And it was really interesting to read Lori's comments about the ants. Never would have crossed my mind and I'm going to pay attention to that. Happy weekend everyone. BTW, it's snowing here :-)


cindy murphy
4/9/2010 5:58:43 PM

Oh! Thanks, Lori, for the information about the flickers. I didn't even think about ants! Makes sense - we've usually got a couple of large ant colonies in the yard every year. Thankfully they're far enough away from the house that they've never been a problem inside, but I wouldn't mind if Mr. Flicker invited a few of his friends over for an open buffet. Mountain Woman - glad you don't mind me prattling on about my birds. I get such a kick out of watching them. The number of species has really increased since we moved in and I put in all the gardens. Living in town, we don't get a lot of the wildlife that I bet you are have on Red Pine Mountain, though we do have our share - just the typical creatures you'd see in town; raccoons, oppossum, squirrels and rabbits. The coyotes travel the creek in our ravine, and sometimes I hear their eerie calls at night. Last year I was thrilled to see a red fox for a few weeks in spring during the early mornings. An occasional deer will run through the neighborhood. But that's about it. No bears - I'm pretty sure they're not even in our area of Michigan, but stay further north. Enjoy your weekend.


mountain woman
4/9/2010 7:05:50 AM

Hi Pam, I never thought about chickens. Ours will be here next month so I'm going to be super careful now that you've mentioned that. Thanks for visiting me!!


pam_6
4/8/2010 3:29:51 PM

Hi Mountain Woman, Mountain Man did a wonderful job on the cute little bird. I know the little fellow was grateful even if he got in a peck or two. Sometimes a guinea or chicken around here will get a piece of nylon baling twine wrapped around their feet and have to have delicate "help". If we don't catch it in time the strings of nylon can cut into their legs or feet. We try to pick up all pieces of twine but we just miss a piece now and then. It is amazing how those hard working hands can do so many different things . The pictures were great. Have a good day. Pam Life on a Southern Farm


lori
4/8/2010 7:16:08 AM

After reading Cindy's comment, I just wanted to say that the flicker you saw pecking at the ground was probably after ants. We have a lot of them here, and they eat a lot of ants. My field guide says ants are 45 percent of a flickers diet!


mountain woman
4/8/2010 6:03:22 AM

Cindy, I loved hearing about your birds. Doesn't it make you glad because it's a sure sign spring is really here. I wonder what your wood pecker type bird is? Maybe the ground is still too hard for worms? We have lots of activities now at our feeders too and the birds are the highlight of my mornings and late afternoons. Just have to be careful because the bears are starting to wake up and lumber down from the woods :-) Thanks for stopping by. Oh, and Mountain Man did get some pecks for sure but not sure they were gratitude. But that was one very, very patient bird.


mountain woman
4/8/2010 5:59:52 AM

Lori, Thanks for letting me know it's a chickadee. We have them all over too and they are such happy, little birds. We were both so glad he could help the poor thing. I can't stand to see any living thing suffer and he/she was one tangled mess. Thanks for visiting me!!!


cindy murphy
4/8/2010 5:05:41 AM

I think Lori's right - it appears from the photos to be a chickadee. They are such busy, little birds - fun to watch at the feeder, taking just one seed, flying away to a perch to eat it, and then back to the feeder again for another, repeating the process over and over. This is a busy time of the year for birds; my feeders and yard is a flurry of feathery activity. I get excited each time I see a new visitor to the yard; yesterday it was a red-winged blackbird, quite common in the countryside, but I've never seen one here in town, much less at my feeder. I watched one of the regulars - a flicker - do something I've never seen him do prior to yesterday. A large wood-peckerish type bird, he's usually in the trees or at the feeder, but yesterday he was pecking at the ground - "drilling" it would be a more appropriate term. As I watched, I wondered what he was drilling for; each time he stopped, he came up empty beaked. Even with all the current activity at the feeders, there's still room for the chickadees; they are constant, year 'round visitors. I'm glad Mountain Man was able to help the little guy on your stump. I wonder, when he was done did he get a little peck on the cheek of gratitude? Enjoy your day.


lori
4/7/2010 10:19:16 PM

I'm so glad you were able to help the poor little thing! From your photos, it looks like the bird you saved is a chickadee, my favorite bird! I've had these adorable little creatures land in my hand and take sunflower seeds. They are one of the braver wild birds. I love to watch them coming to the feeders! Great story!