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A study of birds (with Geoffrey’s assistance)

December 1, 2011

My cat, Geoffrey, brought a bird (dead) into the house on Tuesday. I haven’t been on my regular watch for him barging through the front door with his kills because it’s been so cold so he hasn’t taken the life of anything lately. Tuesday was no different and he had been going in and out all day trying to stay warm. Needless to say, I wasn’t prepared when I heard him screaming at the door to come in (he’s Siamese – need I say more? [Cat people know what I mean]). I opened the door and he streaked in with a little brown bird. Time for damage control.

After I tried reasoning with Geoffrey to bring it back outside, and garnered no results, I locked him in the bathroom and proceeded to remove the bird from the house and vacuum up stray feathers. Then I looked up what kind of bird it was in my guide. I think it was some kind of sparrow.

Is it gruesome that I look up the birds’ species after I’ve buried them? I’ve identified a golden-crowned kinglet, a house finch and a varied thrush that way. I don’t want to, but I figure if the opportunity presents itself….

Golden-crowned kinglet. Photo by Brendan Lally via Flickr

I love birds – songbirds, ducks, raptors, owls. They make the woods, marshes and oceans come alive for me, especially since they are often the first living critter you see or hear. I wouldn’t call myself a birder, but when I see a bird in my yard or when I’m on a walk I get really excited and try to get a better look (my prescription-assisted eyes aren’t the best on that front). Some day, perhaps, I will become a birder of live specimens in their natural habitats. I don’t see Geoffrey becoming docile and Ferdinandian (TM) any time soon.

I feel like this last one was my fault because when I let him out I heard a bird tweeting and I said to Geoffrey (yes, I speak to my cat; he’s not telepathic), “That’s an interesting sounding bird.” Then I left. Twenty minutes later a bird was dead. I’m just going to leave it at that.

Useful bird identification sites

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. December 2, 2011 5:51 am

    Geoffrey is such a beautiful cat!

    Our Eva likes sitting on the windowsill and stalking the birds that fly around. Luckily she’s quite content to watch from the inside, or else I’d need some tips from you about cleaning up caught bird!

    • December 2, 2011 10:22 am

      I am happy for you (and the birds in your yard) that Eva is a gentler soul. I don’t think Geoffrey will ever learn.

  2. Devon permalink
    December 2, 2011 4:30 pm

    So basically what you’re saying is…you killed the bird.

  3. December 5, 2011 1:19 pm

    “That’s an interesting sounding bird”

    “That Will Make For DELICIOUS CRUNCHIES!” – Geoffrey

    Lucy Never Leaves A Corpse To Bury…

    • December 5, 2011 5:09 pm

      This made me laugh…and cry. He normally doesn’t leave a corpse. If I hadn’t taken it away he would have dug right in on the family room carpet. At least Lucy isn’t being wasteful. It’s her well-used survival skills I think.

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