Troutbirder II

Troutbirder II
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Monday, March 28, 2011

Bird Rescue

Recently, the new editors of the Minnesota Ornithological Unions, Minnesota Birding magazine asked their members to submit "Real Stories of Minnesota Birders." So I did. It was a post from Sept 23, 2008 titled "Bird Rescue." Imagine my surprise when reading the March/April, 2011 issue of the magazine I came across a story titled "Baron to the Rescue." While somewhat abbreviated from the original, I recognized the hero dog immediately. Here's the original story......


I was sitting in my reading chair in the living room, deep into Steven Pressfield’s new novel, "Killing Rommel." The LRDG (Long Range Desert Group) was about to set out on their desperate mission, as new 8th army commander Bernard Law Montgomery was attempting to hold the line against Afrika Korps, less than 80 miles from Alexandria. There was the thump of heavy artillery and ooops... it was something that just hit the window. I rushed outside to find Baron (my GSD) mouthing a tiny bird. "Drop it," I ordered. Like a good soldier he complied.

I picked up the tiny creature stunned but still alive (barely). Walking into the garage I found a rag and placed it and then the bird into an empty ice cream pail. With a cat in the house and a curious dog that followed my every move, I determined the safest temporary refuge for the bird was to place the bucket into a empty Coleman cooler.Heading back into the house I found my trusty Peterson birding book and began searching for an identification. Probably a warbler I thought. I had narrowed it down to several LBJ’s but nothing conclusive. I decided to wait an hour or so and then check to see if the bird was still alive. I took the cooler out into the garden and carefully opened the lid. The bird had previously been laying on its side barely breathing. Now to my utter astonishment, it was sitting perfectly upright with a "I just woke up and where in the heck am I" look about him. I took several pictures. Here he is in the cooler looking at me in mutual astonishment.

Then he tried to fly but kept crashing into the side of the cooler. I carefully picked him up and set him on the ground. We looked at each other for a few seconds . I took another picture.



Then he just flew away into the woods.


When I downloaded the digital pictures I saw the conclusive proof. He had pink legs. It was an ovenbird. The first one I had ever seen.....

22 comments:

  1. I had the same thing happen with a nuthatch a few years ago -- kept it in the house while it gained its bearings, then it flew away.

    Congrats on the pub of your story. That is very cool. :)

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  2. Congrats on being published and for being a hero too!

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  3. A very nice story, nice to get it published. I have never read this magazine, I shall have to look for it now.

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  4. Great story and congrats for getting published! That's always fun. I have one good photo of an Ovenbird from a couple years ago when one hit our glass door. When I went outside he flew right through an open garage door, and landed way up high on some lumber. It was my husband to the rescue (I don't do heights). He finally caught him and we turned him loose. I had trouble figuring out what he was as well. I had never seen one before.

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  5. Last summer a robin's nest in the gable of the house next door dropped a chick onto my lawn. I attempted to catch it, but finally my goddaughter took it home with her. It followed her dad around the house for a couple weeks, apparently imprinted on him. He let it out, it stayed the summer around their house, then left with the rest of them in the fall.
    Nice post, Troutbirder.
    Cheers

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  6. Great story with a happy ending - even better that it was published!

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  7. I'm always surprised at how resilient these little, almost weightless bundles of feather and energy are. Great story.

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  8. Nice story, kudos to Baron for his "bird dog" mouth :-)

    I always thought those little birdies - common around my neighborhood in the spring and fall - were wood thrushes. They're awfully hard to tell apart. Now I know they might be ovenbirds!

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  9. Congrats on being published. That is so exciting. The story was great to begin with but now that it's published it's even better.

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  10. I've had goldfinch, chickadees, and a few pine siskins kamakaze into my windows, and only once did they not come around eventually. Apparently they often don't survive for long because of internal bleeding, but in my mind they always survive just fine...

    Congratulations on being published, BTW!

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  11. It is a great rescue. Who would of imagine that you had found a bird you had never seen before.

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  12. What a wonderful story and congrats on being published!

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  13. A wonderful story, with a happy conclusion. Your Baron is one smart & obedient pooch. My Akita is smart too, in her own special way, but somewhat lacking in the obedience department. Congrats on the publication, btw!

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  14. Hooray for saving this sweet little bird! You are a hero in my book!! :)

    And sweet Baron ~ letting him go when you told him too. Good pup!!!

    I love a happy ending!!
    xo Catherine

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  15. A really nice story with a happy ending. Congrats on being published!!

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  16. Glad to hear the bird took off into the woods. That's crazy that Baron didn't hurt the bird. That is one well behaved Shepard!! Last summer I came outside to see a baby hummer swimming around in our kids small pool.
    I put a glove on and grabbed it. As soon as it dried off buzzzzzzz off it went. Resilient little guys!! Look forward to next post.

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  17. You and Barron are heros! Wonderful story..I don't think I have ever seen a Ovenbird..I will have to look it up in my birdguide:)

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  18. Awesome! So glad you saved him and congrats on getting published!

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  19. What a great story, TB--and nice photos, too! Congratulations on its publication. I also just LOVE your previous post," cats and dogs". Your pets are better writers than our little pup--but she is as sweet as she can be :>).

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  20. What a charming story! I'm not at all surprised it was published.

    When I was growing up in a NYC, my cat used to sneak out through windows and come back with live birds which she'd release, unharmed in the house. She acted like they were a gift for me. I had to catch and release them.

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  21. Oh...this just warms my heart! Well done to you and Baron (what a good little soldier - all 45 kilos! - he is!)What a beautiful little ovenbird!! The picture in the cooler almost looks ethereal...as if mist is all around him.
    May all little birds in distress find their way to your helping hands!
    Blessings!
    Ann

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  22. Sorry - I wasn't signed in correctly when I left the other messages!
    Ann

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