Thursday, March 28, 2013

New Mother Needs Help

Yesterday, I headed out to chase after a gull that I need for the contest.  I didn't get the gull, but I did get an opportunity to help a new mother with her kids. The mother was an American Woodcock - which is a shorebird that lives in the woods.

I noticed Mom standing along the side of the road pumping up and down. She was on the shoulder of the road at a very busy and dangerous intersection along Rt 347.  Initially, I thought she had been hit by a car, so I flipped a U-turn to see if I could help.  I got out of the car and started toward her.  She instinctively hunkered down to hide from me as she would when she is in the woods which would have totally camouflaged her.  Unfortunately for her, she was on asphalt so the camo didn't work out so well.  I got really close before she flew away across the highway.  It was then that I noticed the 4 dark fluff balls that were also trying to camouflage themselves on the asphalt - BABIES!  I panicked and just scooped them up - 2 in each hand and ran them across the road.  I gently plopped them into the grass behind the guardrail and ran away hoping that Mom would find them quickly.

In the meantime, I was drawing attention from other drivers - and a police officer who was happy to find out that I didn't need help. I hope Mom and babies learned a lesson about trying to cross the highway.  I ended up with a hand full of baby Woodcock poop and no photos. 
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