I had to run a rescue mission this morning.
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Four itty-bitty baby quail got stuck in my wired-fenced compost heap. Seems mama got them in, but couldn’t figure out how to get them out. They barely had feathers. So, I braved the ferocious rose bush overhanging the spot, and rescued the tiny critters. Mom and pop carried on quite a vociferous conversation when the family was reunited. I don’t know about the babies, but my ears we’re burning.
May 30, 2020 at 4:32 AM #320508
May 30, 2020 at 8:00 AM #320593BluesuedeshoesParticipant
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May 30, 2020 at 4:09 PM #320666Cold Mountain TrailParticipant
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I love quail. When I was young I’d see them in our yard pretty regularly, walking single file in a line with their head bobbin bobbing. Loved that.
Then it seemed they just stopped showing up in later years. Haven’t seen any in forever. Glad they’re still around & you rescued yours.
May 31, 2020 at 1:29 AM #320805ArtfromArkParticipant
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I’ve heard that some birds will not take care of their babies if their babies have been handled by humans.
May 31, 2020 at 4:20 AM #320884PasticheParticipant
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That was stressed to me when I was young and I have always thought that to be true. So, I looked it up and it ain’t true.
If there’s one thing everyone knows about baby birds, it’s that you’re not supposed to pick them up. If you do, the mother bird will smell the residue of your stinky human hands on her baby, and leave the piteously crying chick there to die, right?
Wrong, says Miyoko Chu, a biologist at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. “Birds don’t have a very strong sense of smell ,” she said, “so you won’t leave a scent that will alarm the parent.”
In fact, contrary to what our parents may have told us, most bird parents are unlikely to abandon their chicks over a little human fiddling. “Usually, birds are quite devoted to their young and not easily deterred from taking care of them,” Chu said.
That little bird we rescued din’t die because we touched it. It died because it was sick.
“We’re about to have an election in which Incompetent A is going to be contesting with Incompetent B when both of them have demonstrated nothing remotely like any shred of adequacy to the scope of the problems we face.”
May 31, 2020 at 4:06 AM #320879NV WinoModerator
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Quail social structure is pretty interesting. They seem to do communal child raising raising, and at that age, human contact probably didn’t hurt. They appeared to be very happy to have the kids back.
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