Friday, June 05, 2015

Lifting Up the Thing With Feathers

As I passed this blue bird box yesterday, I thought about what an extraordinary thing it is that it exists at all.

The box itself
is a response to the tremendous number of English sparrows that have colonized much of the U.S., driving native bluebirds out of most natural nesting cavities. The hole on this nesting box has been kept small to keep out cowbirds, wrens, and English Sparrows.

The post has a wobbling stove pipe barrier on it to prevent (or at least discourage) climbing by snakes, raccoons, possums, squirrels, and chipmunks, all of which will readily eat bird eggs.

The bird house hole is further protected with a welded screen guard that makes it harder for raccoons, cats, and starlings to reach in and snatch out eggs or chicks.

Next time someone starts to talk about the limits of altruism, ask them about blue bird boxes made my anonymous souls and erected to the greater glory of mother nature, father time, and small things with feathers.

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