With not much going on in my life at the moment, besides spending the majority of my time at the rescue, I thought I would just express my love for birds and what I do at the rescue.
Really, it doesn’t touch on at all what my blog is mainly about, but I feel that it’s important to show other sides of me besides my aspie side. It’s inevitable that I will find difficulty in most things, and other aspies would agree with me on that, but I definitely do not find difficulty in expressing my love for birds.
Before I started at the rescue, I was actually bored of the idea of birds. I’d go walking with my family and when they caught sight of something flying that wasn’t a pigeon or a crow, they would start watching, in hope to get a good look at it, and then try guessing what it could be. I would then complain about standing around trying to find something that wouldn’t necessarily stay still long enough to get a clear view of. But after my first day at the rescue, my opinions changed massively.
My first day was mainly dealing with collard doves and hedgehogs. All we really do is clean them out. But what shocked me the most was, we have to handle the animals when moving them around. I was asked if I knew how to handle a bird and as we had chickens at the time, I knew. I also somehow felt like it was just obvious to me how they need to be held, which helped. So once I said I knew how to hold them and I was informed where everything was, I was good to go.
I learnt, the more I attended, that with all the pigeons on site, they all have their own personalities. Hughie is one of my favourite residents (we call those who stay with us due to being a bit ‘special’, residents). She has a personality that I would never have expected a bird to have. The longer I’ve been there, the more she has learnt that I feed her with a tube which is her favourite. So the other day when I was cleaning the aviaries, she was following me around. She can’t fly but she somehow managed to climb the mesh on the outside of the aviary, whilst I was inside. She was that desperate to get to me. Then when I was sat on the floor, drying up some bowls, she just happily sat on my knee.
And it’s not just pigeons that have crazy personalities (though our residents always make me laugh with what they do).
As it’s currently baby bird season, we are swarming with all sorts of baby birds, and the numbers are increasing. We have 3 crows, 1 rook, 1 gosling, 2 starlings, 2 blackbirds, 6 robins, 5 sparrows, 13 ducklings, 9 blue tits and that is all I can remember right now, but as you have probably guessed, it’s a lot. These babies require feeding every half an hour which makes the day longer as we all feed them, as well as clean all the cages. This amazed me quite a bit when I had encountered my first baby bird season. I remember walking in one day with my boss feeding a baby blackbird. She suddenly just showed me how to do it, then left me to it. And since then, I have been able to feed some of the most troublesome birds, leaving my boss to trust me the most (without sounding too big headed about it). I have also been given the privilege of feeding hoglets and baby squirrels which I never imagined doing.
I have been there two years now and I never imagined learning as much as I have. I only started with the intention of cleaning cages. But now, I make up medicines, feed baby birds, help with bandaging and putting on splints, tube feed the baby pigeons (which requires putting a tube into the crop so it’s not exactly that easy), I help with new people (something I honestly never thought I’d do, baring in mind my fear for people was ridiculous) and I also take home towels to wash. Along with all that, I am there 3 days a week, so I have dedicated my time and effort to the rescue.
I am more than grateful to have started there as my first introduction to a working environment. I have had some ups and downs but I have continued to stick with it because I know that I would honestly rather be there, than anywhere else.