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A Bird in the Bush

It’s cool, it’s overcast and showers are forecast for throughout the day. I took my early morning coffee out on the balcony to listen to the sparrows chatter, watched two squirrels fighting over who owns the privacy hedge, and didn’t have the heart to tell them: neither. That it’s the dominion of the sparrows.

Their number has grown extensively in the time me and mine have been living in the apartment. And not least because I put fat balls out for them during the winter, along with seed, and make sure there’s always fresh water for them.

It’s not allowed. It’s in the apartment least: do not feed the wildlife. But, until they serve papers on me, I’m not about to stop. This for me is a joy, a pleasure, one that comes with its own small rewards, even if I might find myself in trouble one day.

I’d fight tooth and nail that I can put out on my balcony anything I want, as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone. And yes, I’m well aware of the reasoning behind the lease clause: to stop rats. But I’ve yet to see any rats let alone one that can climb the side of the wall up to our balcony–some 20 feet. And I never throw stuff down onto the grassed areas. Please, credit me some sense.

As a result of my small effort, the sparrow population has definitely grown. As a keen birdwatcher, I’ve observed the small flock grow from about a dozen or so to fifty plus. There seems to be 3 distinct groups. And, with the extra space and feeding area of our neighbouring small park, the sparrows are doing well.

This in turn has had a knock on effect. Birds of prey and crows are more numerous and frequent in hunting this area. Of course they are. Especially as young fledgling sparrows start to leave the nest nagging their parents for food.

I’ve also noted an increase in other bird species pass through our area on feeding runs, through out the year. Everything from grackles, to red and yellow cardinals, and an assortment of tits. And the one whose song me and mine have fallen in love with?

The song sparrow. I don’t know how many there are in our area. But by the back and forth of song first thing in the morning and as evening falls, at least a handful.

Life is good.

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