Monday, May 31, 2010

Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom in my backyard.

Summertime graveyard shift is doing me in again. I woke up well into the PM hours to the rapid fire caws and squawks coming from my backyard tree line. Not a coo, not a chirp...a squawk. Just in case you didn't know, birds don't squawk to be cute - it's fear, alarm,'s drama. Bird drama was going down!!!

Not to be left out of the animal kingdom emergency, Emma Mudflap was darting back and forth like a gazelle on crack barking like a mad dog. Half dressed I dragged myself out back with my camera to find out what the commotion was. Ten minutes into the investigation, I had made it around the entire perimeter of the house following two big black crows who were flying frantically from tree to tree while keeping a watchful eye on me. Just then, over the back fence a little person voice joined the circus, "shut up you stupid crows, stop yelling stupid crows." Birds, dogs, children...a chorus of noise on an otherwise beautiful, warm afternoon. Despite being only five feet from the back door, my father only tuned into the situation after I delivered a full report. It's like a Norman Rockwell.

Then...I heard it. A sound straight from a Hitchcock film. The shrillest of shrill squawks from the side of the house and Emma, dumb as ever, trying to play with a sick, emaciated bird that had left a trail of feathers behind on its sad little walk to die on the side of my house.

ITwo cardboard boxes, a sister, and an hour later, we had become a bird wranglers trying to stay one step ahead of a hopping bird with 1 1/2 wings. Three calls and animal services is on my front porch picking up the bird and taking it to never-never land.

Just another day in the Coughlan household.

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