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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Tuesday Tails, new Mutts Piggie! The California Towhee fledglings' (there are two) progress.

There's a new kid in town... Eddie, the pot bellied pig just trotted into Mutts!  Yay!
 Read all about him HERE

You have to love the Mutt's Menagerie!

Remember this little California Towhee juvenile?  Sorry, again, for that bad picture,but it can still be seen that the bird was in very bad shape.  That was nearly 100°F out there on that paver, and she looked very sick and puffed up, eyes half closed.  She was really very ill.

There are still feathers missing on the back of her head.
But, happier news:
Here she is now.. yesterday, all bright eyed and pecking away at the grain cereal.  At first I thought she was just starving, but her wing and tail were involved and were obviously injured.  This leads me to believe that the cats I am continually chasing from my yard were in someway responsible for the injuries.  I went looking for a study to read and found THIS Thesis by Amy Ann Shipley at Portland State University.  Though it is focused on Spotted Towhees, the birds have almost identical lifestyles and behaviors.

This female California Towhee, and her smaller brother who comes to eat the grain here also, either lost their parents in some way, or some other dreadful thing happened to them.  Sadly, perhaps a domestic cat got it's claws into her.  Both birds are very ragged and behind in development.  It takes a lot of energy and good food to grow feathers.

Domestic cats, in the study above (and several others I've read) do the most killing of young birds, in both Urban and Suburban areas.
 Anyway, she is better, and I hope it stays that way!


  1. Kudos to you and lots of good karma!
    Trying to rescue birds is always a bit iffy, more often than not, it goes badly.
    It's great that you are making an apparent successful effort! You go, girl!

  2. Thank you, so much! I answered phones and transported for a for a Nonprofit called Project Wildlife, and one year they were overwhelmed with babies. When I picked up a nestling finch, they asked me to raise it, so I did! Loved that babé!
    I usually rescued and passed on birds, skunks and possums. Birds I'm allergic too, so didn't keep most of them.
    The two young towhees still come back for a little bit of cereal each afternoon. I bury it in the leaves and they kick and shuffle, which is something all towhees do to find food, and that way the army of smaller sparrows don't eat it all up first.
    The larger rodentia are another problem. They are eating tomatoes now, the rats! But I love them, too. "Everything gotta eat", and they didn't ask to be here either. Fate and it's orphans, eh? But we do keep them out of the rest of the yard. No places to for "sleep overs", and we protect the tomatoes now by picking them nearly green!


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