Something different for a Saturday. This is a reflection from Jilly Driver, of the South Staffs member group. It really is worth a read to the end, thank you Jilly for allowing me to reproduce it.
My garden is so busy with wildlife night and day. Newts, frogs, foxes, bats, hedgehogs it is like the M6 but moving! I am going to substitute the odd word here and there.
I was watching the birds is the garden yesterday. Baby birds learning to fly, mummy and daddy bird feeding their chicks and other birds still building nests and nesting. They are fascinating to watch. Anyway, this baby bird falls/jumps from its nest. It’s so cute bouncing around, I can see mum and dad blackbird watching it. Now this baby is trying to fly.
He keeps flapping his wings with all his might….and he doesn’t move an inch. Mummy blackbird gives another encouraging nudge, his little wings are flapping so hard….. nothing.
I then hear loads of commotion, all the birds in the garden are squawking and shrieking, I look to the sky and there is a magpie. I love magpies but they are so brutal to other birds. The magpie swoops towards the baby bird, mummy bird does her best and flies towards the magpie to save her baby.
The magpie comes at the baby again 3 or 4 times. Each time baby bird is flapping its wings to fly. There is nowhere to run for cover, and I think fear has now taken over and he is exhausted trying to fight, fly and stay alive. It is now just sat there; squawking and waiting for the inevitable.
I am holding my breath, Mr Pants is holding his breath! (Mr Pants is the cat).
Now the magpie isn’t a bad guy, she is just trying to stay alive and feed her baby birds. She is a lone and independent bird. Probably anxious herself as if she doesn’t go out there and attack other birds or take their food, she can’t feed her own.
The magpie comes at the baby again, mummy and daddy blackbirds look exhausted but as the independent magpie launches itself from the silver birch a huge crow comes into the picture almost taking out this lone independent magpie.
This crow is massive!!! Probably a franchise. He is walking across the lawn strutting his stuff “look at me, I’m amazing, I’m going to squash you all” he is just so bloody cocky, y’know the type? So, he starts walking to the baby, I see the fear in the baby’s eyes. The magpie is watching, not wanting to get involved but enjoying the show. The crow is now about 2 metres from the baby (we all know what 2 metres is)
Mummy blackbird swoops for the crow which does a gentle flap of his wings and scares her. He is getting closer, I really can’t watch. Literally from nowhere all these other tiny little independent birds, all different types start flying at this crow…. dive bombing it. It is a nuisance to the franchise crow. The lone independent magpie who refuses to team up with anyone is looking a bit concerned. Birds are bombing the crow, one after another, all sticking together to protect a fellow bird that needs help, clearly strength in numbers!!! The crow flies off.
It’s way too much effort for a small meal. The magpie flies back down. There is now in impenetrable circle around this baby.
The baby bird relaxes, mummy bird gives another nudge from within the safety and support from these small independent birds.
He flaps flaps flaps…..c’mon baby bird, you’ve got this! Flap flap flap….He took off a bit!!! C’mon!!! Flap flap flap….He did it!!! He bloody did it!!! Up into the safety of the tree with the other birds! I cried, I was ecstatic, I was exhausted after it all. Mr Pants went back to sleep!
I was telling my boys what happened and reflected on what I saw.
The independent magpie isn’t mean. It is just trying to feed it’s family.
However, if it actually stopped to think and look around, there is always cat food in my garden so they don’t need to kill the smaller instructor birds by breaking the rules and teaching when they shouldn’t. Doing so will see you reported to the registrar and potentially you could lose you green badge, not to mention the current 2 metre rule. Is it really worth it? There will always be big crow franchises. They look big and flash but when all is said and done they are a bird. Nothing more nothing less.
It was the little birds which stole the show. They were all small independents, yet they looked out for each other, they worked as a team. They kicked ass when it counted. I have never seen anything like it, except at SSADI.
We look out for each other, we rally to the people who need our help. It really is so stressful at the moment due to tests not being cancelled. Please don’t buckle under pressure by going out there to teach. You will put your health at risk and the health of your loved ones, not to mention the possibility of losing your badge. We stick together now more than ever. We don’t start panicking and price dropping with silly offers. We don’t need price wars. We need a united front. There will always be those who try and get what they can out of you without giving back, we all know someone like it. Just know that at SSADI we always have our members’ backs…. even more so if you bring cake to a meeting
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