Sunday, 30 July 2017

Feeding the birds.

Sundays are quiet around here. Most of the very local bars close. Clearly everyone feels that they need a day of rest.

So instead of resting we went out for a walk to the Castro park before it got too hot to be out and about. As it turned out the day has been cloudy but still quite bright and warm. Just about ideal, in fact, for a longish walk and back in time for lunch. We stopped for refreshments at the cafe in the Castro park. The service was slow and the waiter possibly slightly deaf. How does "agua con gas" tunr into "coca cola"? Fortunately he mumbled the order to himself as he went off and so I was able to put him right. I can't remember when I last drank Coke.

Maybe the waiter's hearing or his attention span has been affected by his constant need to chase pigeons away. They really are a major nuisance up there. I watched one of the waiters remonstrate with a pair of daddies whose little girls, side by side in their buggies, were sharing a packet of crisps: a handful for each of them and then a handful thrown out for the pigeons. The daddies appeared to take it in their stride and took the crisps away from the little girls.

They did depart not long after this so maybe they were more miffed than they let on.

Mind you, some very odd people actually encourage their offspring to feed the pigeons. I fail to understand such actions. They never encourage them to feed the seagulls, after all! 

Here's a bird-feeding story from the news. Some bald eagles in Canada picked up a hawk chick, probably intended as food for their own young. However, watched by bird enthusiasts, the mother bald eagle ended up feeding the little hawk. Perhaps he just started squawking, beak wide open, and the mother bald eagle saw yet another gaping maw to be filled with food. And so it went on. Having fed him once or twice, she could not feed him to her own chicks. The end result is one confused chick who doesn't really know what he is but is now almost old enough to fly the nest.

Biologists are watching closely to see what happens. They report: "The young hawk has been seen poking at seaweed close to the eagle nest – a typical foraging behaviour for bald eagles. But he’s also been observed swooping to pick up pinecones and sticks, a behaviour often seen in young hawks as they hone the skills needed to hunt rodents and rabbits from high above. " If his unconventional upbringing proves to have fallen short in teaching him how to hunt, went on one of the experts, “that’s when I think we would catch him and retrain him in a wildlife rehabilitation facility”."

Who knew that such things as wildlife rehabilitation facilities even existed?


  1. I once ordered a Fanta orange at a bar here in Coruña and the waiter brought me a beer. Perhaps he thought it wasn't manly to be seen drinking a Fanta orange.