Aloha humans! The past two days have been very eventful. A small infestation (but more positive) of Chaetura pelagica. Fun times!
Okay, but seriously. Ages and ages ago I told the story of a bird that had gotten into our house. Well… Yesterday we discovered the type of that original bird. Because it’s nest and fledglings fell into our fireplace. Turns out, we don’t have a damper! Our fireplace was full of eggshells, bird poop, and babies. The rain had knocked down a nest with four or five fledglings (one of them might’ve been an older nestling still).
By the way, that Latin name is for Chimney Swifts.
We called maybe five different wildlife centers to find out what to do. We kept getting redirected and given more phone numbers until finally a bird specialist told us what was up. She said that since they’re chimney swifts we just need to place them on the inner wall of the chimney above the damper. We don’t have a damper, so we just had to put them above the inner ledge.
The five babies were attached to the decorative grate we had placed in front of the fireplace. We slowly pulled the grate away, Lizzie singing the whole time (she had been while we were calling too to keep them calm. It worked really well! They clustered together as close to her as they could get to listen. It was some Snow White magic!), and pried them off the grate and gently place them in a box with a towel in it. I say we, it was actual Mom. She (like I) is terrified of birds, but she did what she had to do. She also wore gardening gloves as she did.
Then, I shone a light on a mirror so she could see where to put the babies. She carefully placed them on the inner wall, then she put the grate in front of the fireplace, flush with the wall so nothing could get out. We heard them get quieter as they climbed. I felt kinda guilty because I had freaked out and refused to help. I was scared, what do ya want! I did do some research to help me calm down, but I couldn’t work up the nerve to do anything actually helpful. Whatever, we thought we were done.
We were wrong.
I woke up to Lizzie explaining that there was a bird caught between a window and a whiteboard a good ways away from the chimney.
I was less scared and more annoyed now. Why must our lives be plagued by birds! I took a look. It was a bit disheveled, so we thought it might be a fledgling, but it was clear it could only have gotten there by flying.
It was not a fledgling.
We decided that the best solution was to remove the screen of the window from the outside, open the window, and let the bird fly out.
Problem: We saw a wasp nest between the screen and window.
Solution: Remove the screen very carefully.
I may be scared of birds, but I’m not scared of wasps. I volunteered to remove the screen. I got in my wasp hunting gear, mentioned before here, and went around to remove the screen.
It was already popped out a bit at the bottom, so I just grabbed the bottom and pulled it up. The wasp nest was empty.
I pulled the screen all the way out and got my first good look at our bird friend. Definitely an adult. Actually quite pretty. I wish I’d gotten a good picture. All I got was a picture of the tail from beside the whiteboard.
See? It’s that weird shape back there. That’s a birb.
Anyway, screen removed, now we have to open the window. Mom tried to grab the window from the top to open it. No luck. You can’t really get a grip on it that way. I decided to try to open it from the outside. It took some convincing, but I got Mom to agree with that plan.
So, I went back outside to look at the window. It was cracked open just the tiniest bit. I expressed this to Mom and Lizzie (Mimi had decided she wanted nothing to do with this one, since she single-handedly dealt with the last one. Rood.) via exaggerated gestures and shouting.
Then, I hooked my fingers under the window and slowly pulled it up. I got it as high as I could before *ahem*… chickening out. The others held the window up, until they discovered I had raised it enough that it would stay open on it’s own. Mom kept her hand on it just in case, but we were good.
Except the frickin bird wouldn’t leave! It just sat there!
Mom: “I think it’s in shock.”
Me: shouts in an attempt to startle it
Mom: “That’s just mean.”
Me: “I guess we just gotta nudge it, then it’ll go”
So, I reached down to nudge it, then thought, “hold on!” I turned around and grabbed a stick thing we had attempted to use to open the window earlier (I’m not gonna say it was a toilet brush handle… just the handle). I slowly lowered the end towards the bird, and carefully… just… touched it.
It immediately took off out the window and flew away. I won’t lie, I jumped a bit when it moved, but mission accomplished! We shut the window and put a lock on it. We decided to leave the screen for later.
I started listing off possibilities for who this bird could be in relation to the babies we saved yesterday. Sometimes a bird from the flock will stay with a mating pair to help raise the nestlings/fledglings. So, this could’ve been a parent or “nanny.” Either way, we came to the conclusion that this bird was probably in the nest when it fell, and had left the fireplace to find a way out. Instead, it got stuck.
So, yeah. I made up for yesterday’s un-helpfulness by doing everything (according to Mom). Liz did sing to this one, but since it was an adult, it didn’t help quite as much. Still, it did keep it calm enough for it not to fly around the whole house.
Anyway, that’s my story.
Thanks for reading humans, love ya all! Byeeeeee!