IHST – On the Invention of Birds

IHST 10-21-13


When I was about 11 or 12, I got a pet bird for Christmas. She (or he, we never did get the gender sorted out) was a bright green and yellow budgie. I named her “Quiver.” A short while later, we got another pet bird, a blue and white budgie I named Mr. Bluebird. I was feeling particularly imaginative.

Mr. Bluebird was a survivor. A neighbor had given him to us after her cat had eaten his mate. He was also a total tool. The moment Mr. Bluebird entered that cage, Quiver lost whatever affection she may have had for me. Mr. Bluebird became her one and only.

Of course, Quiver had always treated me with more trepidation than anything else. Not that I blame her. Who wants to be a pre-teen’s pet, anyway?

Quiver and Mr. Bluebird died when I was in high school. By that time, we had a pet dog, and I didn’t give them much attention anymore. Of course, they had each other.

During their brief lives, Quiver and Mr. Bluebird had many adventures both inside and outside the cage. They ate and drank and sang all day long. But the thing they loved to do most of all was poop. Between the two of them, Quiver and Mr. Bluebird produced around two or three pounds of poop per week. That’s saying something, considering both birds were only a few ounces each.

Consider, if two birds can produce so much poop in a week, imagine how much poop all the birds in your hometown can produce?

Sometimes, I look out my window and can’t help feeling surprised at how very little of the world is covered in bird poop.

Auklet flock, Shumagins 1986

“Look out below!” –Auklet flock, Shumagins 1986 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

3 thoughts on “IHST – On the Invention of Birds

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