Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Amahl, p.m.

After 4pm is a good time to go down into the garden. This seems to be prime feeding time. First delight, Papa Robin with somebody's meal. Even with a mouth full of worms he was calling to a baby. Which one?? That's easy, just follow the food and the voices.

I ran to where I had last seen Amahl. Still there. He had obviously spent hours on this branch and he was calling back to Papa.

Food delivery. This presented problems, because he can only grip with one foot. Keeping balance even on this wide branch was not easy.

A couple of times it looked as if he'd slide off the branch backwards.

Next delivery: berries. Same problem with balance.

Next food delivery. It seemed as if Papa was forcing Amahl to move off branch or to stand up. Berries were not plopped in all at once which is the usual delivery. They were shown, then pulled back. Amahl can't move back and forth easily and can't stand up to eat.

This was an anxiety-producing feeding session to watch, because Papa seemed to be forcing Amahl to do something he can't do.

After eating Amahl started moving around on the branch, getting set to fly. I held my breath...

And almost had a heart attack. Amahl flew. Not successfully. He went down.

There are short growths, shoots really, near the fir tree bush. He grabbed on with the one working foot. Clung there. Clutzy crash landing of sorts. Heart- stopping for me.

Tumbled further, but clung again, one-footed.

Tried flying, but ended up tumbling down into the bushes. I almost died. What could I have done? Try to catch him? You can't do that with nature. Scared to death I looked into the brush.. and Amahl scurried for cover on the ground deeper into the brush. He could have broken a wing or the other foot in that tumble. After that, totally shaken, I had to find a different subject for a while. My nerves can only stand so much.
Across the path I heard "peep, peep". Ah, the two siblings, both safe and sound, calling for food, keeping warm in the sun, healthy and comfortable.
Amahl is fine. I've seen him this morning. Those images will be for tomorrow. The break is between the tibia and his foot, so he is "walking" on the end of the tibia, foot pointed backwards instead of forwards.

1 comment:

Cathy said...

that's the major drawback in observing have to take the bad with the good. poor thing...tough love only in nature. hopefully he'll do just fine. you see so many pigeons walking around with so many foot injuries. more worried about the baby robin's nails..not getting worn down could be more of a problem. good luck trying to continue observing this family. not sure if i could do it.