Downy Rescue

The girls and a downy woodpecker we helped. I love how this picture looks as though the heavens are smiling down on us.

I have some friends who periodically have a problem of birds hitting their window. I have always suspected that it was from accipiters (a type of hawk that eats other birds that will drive feeders birds towards windows in an attempt to stun them making it easier to eat them).

Sure enough Sunday I was with some girls and we were doing some Japanese ink drawing when I heard a dull thud, "There's a hawk!" I exclaimed before turning and facing the window and sure enough, there was a first year sharp-shinned hawk circling the feeders. We all started screaming, "Go, go go, go!" (in hind sight, I'm pretty sure I was the only one who was actually rooting for the hawk to get something.) The hawk circled the feeders twice, dropped below the window, grabbed something and flew off. Everyone else was marveling at the excitement of what we just witnessed, I on the other hand snuck outside to see if there were any leftovers, sure enough, there was a female downy woodpecker spread eagled under the window. I picked her up and told the girls to get me a box. I explained that the woodpecker was probably fine, but just needed about 15 minutes in a dark box to regain her senses. (Most window collision injuries are short and the birds just need a quiet place to recover, the bird had no obvious injury or blood coming from the nostrils or mouth so I figured this was a safe bet).

We left the box alone for about 15 minutes on the table and heard some rustling. I showed the girls the downy, let them each touch it, and it flew away.

We saw the northern lights on Sunday and helped a small female woodpecker, all in all not a bad day.