Nothing like a slaughter to put you in the mood for spring, right?
You’ve heard of the phrase “first, do no harm”? It’s a doctor’s guiding principle (though I sometimes think oncologists walk on the wrong side of the line).
We don’t abide by that theorem here. No sirree, here on Minnesota Transplant, our principle is “anything for the blog.” I’ve posted pictures of me dressed as a Klingon warrior, I’ve made ricotta cheese, I’ve even mucked through an arid 155-page report to determine how much teachers are paid (a relic written in 2009 but still one of my most popular posts to date).
Today, I almost killed a baby bird.
Yeah, but the worst part is, it wasn’t on purpose.
So I let the dog out in the backyard. A common occurrence when it’s not 50 degrees below zero. And this angry bird starts dive-bombing her.
I’ll remind you, my dog weighs 8 pounds, and while she’s energetic and territorial, she’s not a birding dog.
So I leave my usual post behind the patio glass to investigate, and I heard chirps coming from the nest built in the rafters of the deck.
A-ha! Mama robin is defending three baby robins in the nest.
Do I think, “Oh, Mama robin has a point, maybe I should get the dog back in the house?”
I think, “I’ve gotta get a picture of this for my blog!”
So I grab my camera and venture up the deck steps to get a closer look. Like paparazzi after a Bieber pic, I stick the camera in the babies’ faces and boom! One of them flies out of the nest — or drops out of it, it was sort of awkward so I’m not sure — and I hear Mama robin going even more berserk. Eek! I’ve disrupted the ecosystem for sure. That baby bird won’t be able to get back into the nest, and I’m in big trouble.
Meanwhile, the dog is peacefully sniffing rabbit turds in the corner of the yard.
I realize I’ve got to get the dog back into the house so Mama robin can cajole baby bird back into the nest, so I approach the dog in the perimeter of the yard.
She thinks it’s a game, and starts running in circles around me.
The dog thinks we’re having a good time now! She makes her way to the patio where, of course, she spies something even more interesting than her shrieking master.
The baby bird.
Oh! My! God!
I’m screaming, “No! No, Chloe! No!” My dog is about the examine baby with her mouth.
Baby is skittering away on the cement. Mama is chirping somewhere in the background. Chloe is intent on catching her first ever bird.
I race to scoop up the dog, and I snatch her into my arms just before she chomps on a chicken a la robin sandwich. In the house we go.
I didn’t touch the nest.
I didn’t touch the bird.
I didn’t mean to get baby almost killed. I hope nature’s balance returns baby bird to Mama’s nest.
But I got my picture: