Saturday, July 14, 2007

Sadness in the Garden

On Friday afternoon, while getting the mail, Emily found a baby bird in the middle of the street. It didn't seem to have any injuries but it's eyes were closed and it didn't move. I called Phillip and he said he had seen it early that morning on his way to work, but hadn't realized it was a baby.


After looking online, I was pretty sure it was a baby male cardinal (my favorite kind of bird). Can you see the slight redness on his feathers? I didn't want him to get run over and there was a rain storm coming so...


...I put him in a basket planter in the backyard. He was quickly given the name "Jack," by Grace.


We put an umbrella over him to protect him from the storm.


Soon, Jack stood up on the edge of the basket and started chirping for his mama.


We have had a male and female cardinal in our neighborhood for a few years so I put some sunflower seeds in this feeder and right by the basket in hopes that they would find their baby.


He continued to chirp and soon his mama found him! That afternoon she came near him many times, but wouldn't feed him.


Saturday morning, I was in touch with the local wildlife bird rescue and they seemed to think that he would be fine since his mom knew where he was, but to bring him in if she hadn't fed him by the late afternoon.

By 1:00pm Jack had taken a turn for the worst. He was no longer standing up or chirping. I called bird rescue again and they said to fill a sock with rice, microwave until warm, put the bird near it, inside a box, and bring him right in.


We all got into the van and before we even pulled out of the driveway, Jack took his last breath.

We are all very sad, but especially Emily since she found him in the first place. There were lots of tears and Jack is now sleeping in our garden, beneath the Bleeding Heart and Fern.

37 comments:

Tiany said...

Oh Kelli, I am so sorry to hear about your little bird :-( You all are so sweet to have done all that you did for him. Such a sweet little guy too. We found a humming bird recently and lost it too, the boys were so sad. Your post made me tear up, I have a soft spot for wild birds :-( I always try to keep baby bird supplies around the house for cases such as these. I have raised tons of baby birds, kittens and wild rabbits. I worked at an animal hospital for 5 years so we would get these orphans often.

Sending you all cyber (((hugs)))

Heather said...

Oh Kelli - I have tears in my eyes! I'm so sorry that you have experienced this loss with your children today. However, I am glad that you have had the opportunity to teach your children to tenderly care for a little bird of God's wonderful creation. I am sure that you reminded your childen that God cares for the birds of the air, and much more so He cares for them. I pray the hurt they feel today will heal quickly and that they will be stronger, knowing just how much they are loved by our wonderful God. Perhaps you can all sing 'His Eye is on the Sparrow' over Jack's resting place - that's what our children find comfort in when we face the death of sweet birds - which is often since we have a red tailed hawk who lives in our woods who hunt more than he consumes and an outdoor cat - boy does Peppermint get in trouble when his 'gift' is winged!

diana said...

oh, how sad. he was such a cute little bird and i can see why your kids got so attached to him. i'm sure it made things worse the fact that he seemed to be doing better at one point.

some lessons are painful. i'm sure you handled it with gentleness and compassion.

Penless Thoughts said...

Oh sweet and sad story :o(
Susan

Ruth said...

I'm sorry about the little birdie. We love animals, too, and would do the same thing you did. It's wonderful your children are so tender, but it does make it hard when you lose an animal you love or are hoping to save.

Barbara H. said...

Oh, that is sad. I love the picture of him standing on the edge of the basket. Hopefully in time your children's memories of him will be sweet rather than painful.

Lori B said...

So sorry to hear about the bird.
How sad for everyone.

Storybook Woods said...

I am soo very sorry about your little bird. It is very hard, especially for children. Love Clarice

Mrs. C said...

How sad! :(

At least you did the best you could to try to help the poor baby.

rohanknitter said...

Awwww, that is sad. It's so hard when you try to help an animal and it just doesn't work despite your efforts. At least you all know you did what you could. We just love to watch the cardinals that live in our yard. The boys found a mangled baby cardinal in the barn that the cats had gotten and I thought they were going to string the cats up!!

Susie said...

You have such a tender heart. I know that had to be hard for you and your children to watch. Cardinals are such a gorgeous bird...
xoxo

Sue "Sioux" Seibert said...

We've done some bird rescue, and it's really hard to help them when they're like that. You did all you could...and much more than most would have done.

Pam said...

This seems to be the weekend for birdie stories. Kristi over at Happymama's just posted about two bluejays they are caring for until Monday when they hope to turn them over to the vet. It seems neighbors cleared some property in recent days and they believe the nest was destroyed!

So sorry for your loss!

Corin said...

Poor Little Jack! It looks like he has a nice little resting place though!

Becky said...

OH! I kept reading and hoping for a happy ending to Jack's saga. I am sorry that you had to get attached and have such a loss. What a priviledge to be among those that have nurtured the creatures God created. To think He had the numbers of Jack's feathers counted out.

You do a good job of caring for all the birds, Kelli.

charish said...

I sorry about the baby bird. I hope the kids took it ok. It was beautiful bird. Nature has a way about it self. Please give my best to the kids.
If you get a chance check out my blog. I know how you love drawings. I am having one this week. Pass it on.
Sarah

Cheryl (Copper's Wife) said...

I'm so sorry, and poor little Emily! Remind her, though, that not a sparrow (or even baby cardinal) falls from thy sky without the Lord knowing of it. We are all in His care at all times, even when there are sad times; and if He knows all about the baby bird, He certainly knows about her heartache at its loss.

Melissa said...

Oh, that is so sad. :( They'll be something special about that fern just like in the story Where The Red Fern Grows. :( This is so sad, to think of that baby bird standing up and chirping for his mama. It was sweet of you to take care of it though, and for the kids to give him a name, and hope for the best for the little birdie. Aww.

dot said...

Nice pictures Kelli but sad story. I wonder why it's mother wouldn't feed it. I guess she must have known something was wrong.

Rebecca said...

What a SAD story. I have heard that touching a baby bird will cause the parent not to feed it, but I have also heard that that is an old wives tale.

I am so sorry that that happened. He was sweet.

You tried your very best and that is more than I can say for most...

Mrs. Pivec said...

*sigh* I is hard to see these things happen. Little Jack is fortunate he had you to care for him in his last hours. I empathize with you all completely, as this type of thing (rescuing and caring for lost animals) is very common in our own family.

With it all, though, your children learn how to care for God's creation in spite of outcomes we don't wish for.

Gena said...

Oh, I'm so sad for you. We had that happen, too, but did get to take the little bird to the wildlife sanctuary. My mother found him in the backyard after our tornado two summers ago.

I will say a prayer for you and your children. How sweet you all were to take such good care of the little one.

Karen said...

I'm sorry about the lil babe. Life is full of opportunities to learn about life and death, but it's still so hard. You did more for that little guy than most people would have. You have such a gentle, sweet heart.

Lynne said...

So sad abot Jack, but you did the best you could to help him. I'm sorry there wasn't a happier ending.

Julie Marie said...

Oh, I have tears in my eyes. I was really pulling for him and I thought he would be okay when his mama found him. I am glad you gave him a good resting place.

Julie

Myrna said...

What a sweet story. You and your children are precious to care for him. I'm sure you used this experience to help your children learn a little more about the realities of life and, sadly, the end of life.

Mindy said...

Oh Kelli, This is so sad. He looked like a sweet lil' bird. Hugs to you and yours...
Mindy

Jennifer said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your sad ordeal with Jack.

Even in his short little life, I'm sure that he has had a tremendous impact on your family, especially for Emily.

What a wonderful burial place to rest his little body. I love how you used this experience to teach your kids about God's love. We all need reminding every now and then.

Naturegirl said...

Dear Kelli and Emily:
It was meant for you to find this little ~Jack~ had you not he would NOT have experienced the love and care that was given to him in his final hours.Nature has a way and a at times we find it hard to understand but know this that Emily was chosen to find ~Jack~ and bring him home for his deserved resting place in your garden filled with love!
As for his last crys well I think he was saying good bye to his mama and her visits is what he needed.She also needed to say goodbye.

You made a difference in this wee souls short life Emily..You gave him a name love and a sweet bed for his fianl rest..fitting for ~sleeping angels~ God bless you..hugs NG

Marci said...

I am sorry that is always hard. Just think though, in his last moments that were coming anyway... He was loved and cared for. God saw to that.

Sharon said...

That is so sad! A few years ago we had a mother wren get hit by a car going down the road as she was flying back to our house to feed her babies that were chirping in their safe little nest on our porch. My daughter and I saw it happen. We both cried. My husband suggested we dig up some worms and squish them to feed the babies. We fed them with some tweezers, but one by one they all just died. It was so sad.

Mama Russell said...

Oh, that is so sad! I cannot tell you how many baby birds I have had to care for in the past few years and for some reason, none of them did survive. It was always sad to have to bury the wee thing. I pray for God's comfort for your little girl.

Trudi M said...

Oh Kelli, that story break my heart. I am so sorry it did end well.

Chrissy said...

Aww. That is so sad. Praying you find comfort in the kindness and loving things you did for that samll bird.

devildogwife said...

I'm so sorry. I know how hard that can be on the children. (((hugs)))

Becky said...

Oh, how very sad about the little baby bird. I'm a bird lover too, and this is very sad.

Mrs. U said...

Oh how sad!!! I am thankful, though, that y'all took time to care for Jack. Your children all learned a sweet lesson from this. :)

His,
Mrs. u