Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Rescue and Renewal

We had finished lunch on Saturday.  J. had retreated to his recliner, I was tidying the kitchen.
The sliding door was partially open to the afternoon sunshine, cats lounged on the step,
wandered in and out.
As I reached for a towel to dry my hands there was a commotion at the door.  Teasel streaked in from the yard, carrying something in her jaws--a creature which let out an anguished sound somewhere between a squack and a shrill screech.
"Oh, no," I exclaimed, "Teasel has a bird!  Or--maybe a squirrel?"
Teasel bolted pell mell down the basement steps with several other felines in interested pursuit.
J. snatched a pair of heavy gloves from the hearth and we rushed to the rescue.
Teasel was under a table in the basement, glowering in a slightly cross-eyed manner.
J. closed in and a bird hopped away from the cat.
"It's a bluebird," said J. who had the better view.
"If she had to catch a bird, why not an undesirable one--like a starling?" I lamented.
J. made a lunge, Teasel snatched her bird and raced up the stairs.
"Which way did she go?" shouted J.
I sighted several tails disappearing around the bedroom door so we waded in.
Teasel, carrying her bird, evaded J. and dashed into the living room.  The bird let out another terrified cry.
Somehow Teasel and the bluebird became separated behind the sofa. While J. made beligerant noises at the hovering cats, the bird hopped toward the fireplace and took cover in an old iron kettle which we keep at one side of the hearth.
J. scooped up the bird, held it gently as he inspected it for damage.
There was no blood, nothing appeared broken.
I snatched up the camera, but didn't get a decent photo, as sun was glaring off the sliding doors.
It didn't seem fair to detain the bluebird for prolonged posing.
J. stood on the step and tossed the bird into the bright air.
The little thing rose in a swoop, then soared higher, coming to rest in the top branches of a tree at the end of the dooryard.
We sighed with relief and herded the feline pride into the house.

When Willow kitten smashed the main branch from my angel wing begonia nearly two months ago, I trimmed the damaged end of the stalk and set it in a jar of water near the kitchen sink.
I began to doubt that it would root.
Last week, moving things to wipe the counter, I noticed the white threads of new roots.
Turning the jar in the light I found the tiny leaf which has opened under water.
Soon I will find a container, bring in the sack of potting earth to warm to house temperature before tenderly potting on this 'slip.'
The remainder of the plant, broken off nearly at the soil line, is under the grow lights in the cool part of the basement.  It too is reviving--unfolding fresh leaves of silver-spangled green.
I am encouraged!


  1. Stories of hope for the New Year! I've never understood why cats, having caught a meal, do not dispatch their prey straight away. No other animal seems to toy with their victim. Lucky for the Bluebird that things are so!

  2. I am always amazed that the cats can carry these birds etc so softly so as not to harm them and at the same time be so brutal and tear them to bits. Ours are more in the habit of bringing in frogs, all in one piece, and I didn't know that frogs can make such a loud squealing noise but believe me they can.
    All the same we can't condemn them for doing what is naturally in their nature can we?

  3. Isn't it interesting how we take such pleasure in nurturing broken things (including plants), must be our motherly instincts.

  4. In a way they are both rescues...cant believe Teasle didn't harm it.... amazing that after all that, the blue bird flew off. As for the roots in a jar ...I used to root cuttings like that ....I found it so exciting to see the new roots appear. xx

  5. Bet that little bird had quite a tale to tell when it returned to its flock! Must have been fascinating to see a bluebird up close. We rarely see them around here. Always something going on around your place!

  6. Mac had to rescue a lizard from our cat, he had no gloves and the cat ripped a claw through the cuticle on his finger and it's still hurting a week later, of course the cold weather doesn't help.

  7. I recently rescued an unharmed goldcrest from Lucy`s jaws. The small mammals are not so lucky as she seems to kill them much more deftly.

    Thank goodness your bluebird survived without damage.

  8. Oooh, a bluebird! I agree - kitties, next time pick on an old starling! Glad you saved it!

  9. What a story that bluebird will have to tell at bedtime....

  10. I am so far behind with my comments i don't think I'll ever catch up. What with the holidays, our two week trip at Thanksgiving, anew computer and all its weird ways to learn as well as the new programs and printer. Then we got a new telephone and it all has to be programmed and names entered etc. OOf! I'm quite overwhelmed with all this techie stuff, so I have promised myself I will take some time off to go back and read all the posts you have written. Your writing and experiences are always so calming and interesting. I've missed visiting.
    I'm glad the bluebird wasn't hurt--and sadly cats will be cats. Happy New year!