This one is a real event that I’m sending into the void for no sake but to send it. Maybe I’m discovering I’m not completely heartless, contrary to the popular consensus. I mean, the argument will still be made that I’m completely clueless, but I’m at peace with that idea by this point.
While working on a palm tree to remove some dead growth that I’d let get out of control, I cranked up the headphones and went at it with a hand saw and electric trimmer. It was time for the tree to be brought up to specs. I’d largely avoided the responsibility for a bit because this very tree had inspired a post long ago called “Palm Trees: The Jerks of Trees.”
I set to work with vigor and focus. As I was rounding to the last quarter of the tree to be done, I froze and my heart immediately sank.
In front of me was a baby bird in a nest that I’d just accidentally destroyed. The bird was frozen in place, too young to make any sort of escape. I dropped my saw and gave an exclamation along the lines of “Oh no!”
The bird was further trapped by the collapsed nest and tree pieces I’d been removing, and the nest itself was intact but ready to fall. I extracted the nest, and noted that there should have been more than one bird in there.
Alas, there on the ground was the dead sibling. It may have been alive when the nest collapsed and fell, or it may have died from fear, which I’ve since learned is a cause of fatality with nests that get displaced. The bird, essentially, has a heart attack.
To make the long story short, I held the little survivor and the nest in my hand as we managed to find a nearby wildlife refuge that could take the poor little creature in and provide care.
I know my picture shows the nest on a cloth towel that I had at hand in the moment, but that was quickly switched to paper towels per the instruction that I got. I drove the bird to the wildlife refuge in a well-ventilated box with the recommended amount of quiet and darkness to help calm and soothe.
I have no sort of aphoristic wisdom that I’ll claim to have gained here. I don’t have any sort of deep insight on mercy, regardless of the fact that I’ve discovered fewer people are inclined toward mercy than is healthy. Like I said at the start, I’m more or less speaking this out to the void for the sake of speaking it.
I regret displacing the nest, and apparently causing the death of the little sibling bird. Life is complicated and unexpected in a lot of ways.
Doing something with good intent can nevertheless lead to unintended sorrow. It costs nothing to be gentle.
I hope that little bird does well and becomes a healthy, functional adult after this rough start. Bad days happen, but with a little effort we can turn things around.
Hang in there, little bird.