Tag Archives: Urban Wildlife

Busy Day, Busier Tomorrow! ๐ŸŒœ

Today I got a very respectable amount of artwork done! A piece of gift art and two warm-ups along with another commission that I inked the entire background of.

Like yesterday, I was up early and went out on a long walk, about an hour long. Early on my walk, I spotted something that made my heart leap. The burrowing owls were still out!

It is prohibited to disturb burrowing owls, so I did not get overly close. I crossed the street and walked on that sidewalk but that was it. One hid, but the other one stared at me all the way! So very cute.

During my walks I often rescue snails, earthworms and tiny frogs from the hot sun and put them in the grass. It’s hard to tell in these pics, but this guy was rather big-shelled for a bradybaena similaris. I wanted him for my tank, but he’d managed to grow so big and beautiful right there in the urban wild. I couldn’t tear him from his natural habitat.

That aside, I managed my eating rather well today and exercised, too, but did not drink enough water at all. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ๐Ÿ’ง I must make sure I drink enough tomorrow, because we are going out to the Swap Shop if the rain doesn’t cancel that –and it will involve a lot of walking.

We haven’t been there in forever. I’m really excited about going.

In the afternoon I read the last book in the Hagwood trilogy some more while having my coffee.

I can’t believe everything will be over after this book. I will really miss these characters. I wonder if Kernella will get Finnen at the end. As insufferable as she is in the beginning, she has really grown on me.

After I’m done with this, I need to pick another book that I left unfinished –either The Vampire Lestat or Tarzan. Once I am done with those two, I will reward myself with Jurassic Park.

Anyway, have a pic of some of my slimy guys at home:

And a GIF of Tomoyo playfully destroying our chairs:

That’s it for today! I hope I’ll have plenty to share after tomorrow’s adventures. Goodnight, one and all!

A Little Bird’s Story ๐Ÿ•Š๏ธ [CW: Animal Death]

Soโ€ฆ I havenโ€™t wanted to talk about this until I knew how it would turn out. When it didn’t turn out good, I asked myself, should I blog about it at all? But, it was still a little story, an experience, so I want to blog about it. This little bird did not make it, so please keep that in mind if you want to continue reading.

On Thursday morning, as I was going down the stairs, I had an ungodly noise of something hitting the window glass. Like, a soccer ball or something. Scared the heck out of the cats. Of course being hurricane grade, the glass did not break. I went out to see what happened.

I was surprised to see a bird under the window, looking stone-dead. It was such a small bird for such a terrible noise. I should mention, birds flying into our windows is very unusual. In many years I never noticed it happen before.

Anyway, I stared, waiting to see some movement and praying I would not see any: with such a terribly hit, if the bird wasn’t dead it would be dying. As a child I accidentally dropped a baby hamster on a concrete floor, and I can tell you the effect that an impact of that sort has on a small animal is one such that you can never remove from your mind’s eye. In so many words, I did not want to trigger one of my worst childhood memories.

The bird did not move. I decided to leave the job to Christopher (very “nice” of me considering the bird’s body would endure the Florida heat for maybe six hours until he was able to clean it, but, you know, GROSS).

Two and a half hours later, I went to get my mattress when I noticed it delivered.

And then…

No bird.

I wondered, did the body get taken away by a predator? But, no: I heard some crazy flapping behind my head, and the bird flew to the fence. It took me a few seconds to process my shock: the bird, on which I had checked just in case a few times during the aforementioned couple of hours, and it had NOT moved, was not only alive, not only walking, but was able to fly onto the fence. Even so, after being concussed and lying out cold for 2 hours, I knew, there is NO way this bird is okay. I tried to gently grab it and it dropped unceremoniously onto the other side.

So I went inside, grabbed a cloth, and then out to the yard. Gently, I coaxed the little bird to a corner, where I easily caught it as carefully as I could. I took it upstairs, where I prepared a cat crate with towels, water, seed, dried mealworms, and suet. Then I placed the bird in it, and set a camera on it so I could bother it as little as possible.

For the most part it hid from me, like this, at the very end:

Based on what I read online, my plan was to keep the bird for maybe 48 hours, and then see if it could fly, since it appeared to have no serious injuries (later it would become obvious that in my zeal not to bother the bird, I did not look anywhere near carefully enough).

By the next day, to my great joy, I saw the little guy drinking:

As well as eating:

I was completely elated. Surely if you are eating and drinking you will recover.

A couple of days later I decided it was time to see if the bird could fly. I did not want to get too attached and worried that, without access to insects, it could not heal as well. So we let it out inside the library and in a split second it flew onto a bookcase. Hooray!

But when we took it out, it could not fly. Also, an injury to the surface of one wing became more visible at this point, with some exposed flesh. You can see that area in the photo below:

By this point I knew I was out of my element, so we went to the only rescue near us who would take anything, even invasive species, they take anything that needs help. It was a good drive, a half hour away.

During this time, on which the photo above was taken, even in spite of the car ride the bird was eating. I felt so hopeful for it.

Well…

When I gave it to them, the first thing they mentioned was a terrible injury I somehow missed completely. Check out its legs in the photo below:

One leg is broken at the ankle. The bird dragged it. It looked so bad that one of the people at the rescue thought it might be a birth defect.

Still, the point was: can it perch? That, they said, was the key factor. It needed to perch in the wild. And I saw it perch, twice it managed to get on high places. Once on top of an IKEA shelf when I decided it was ok to release it, and before I caught it, it perched on the fence. But still they seemed to think this was a likely dealbreaker for the poor thing and it would have to be put down (it was for the vet to decide).

The vet took it to the back. Quickly, I was informed of serious internal bleeding in additional to the leg issue, and potentially having been attacked by a cat prior to hitting my window (a possible reason why it became disoriented and had that accident).

I was distraught. This little guy had been eating, drinking, seemed energetic. Surely, perhaps it could be rehabilitated for life in an aviary or sanctuary? It certainly seemed to want to live. I would have liked to give it my best shot in my own home of getting better. But that is legally not allowed.

Donโ€™t get me wrong, I understand such laws exist for a reason and I was repeatedly told I did right by the bird in taking him there, but the bird doesnโ€™t know about laws. It just has a desperate will to live, and I think it could have… It felt so unfair.

Still, it was an experience so I wanted to record it here. I’m sorry that it doesn’t have a happy ending. ๐Ÿ˜”

Froggy Neighbor ๐Ÿธ

In our yard we have lots of little neighbors. Geckos, huge iguanas, squirrels, bluejays, curly-tails, some snails (tiny ones) the occasional opossum or raccoon, a few cats, some mice, hundreds of spiny-backed orb weaver spiders, and TONS of little frogs!

Today while watering the grass I came across one such froggy –a rather big one– who was acting sort of lethargic. These frogs generally jump away as soon as I walk near. But he stayed, even as I poked him a little, which was concerning.

He was on the side of my house (no grass near him) and with the sun rising, which can easily bake such a small critter to death here in FL, I could not leave him there. So I grabbed him and misted him with spring water, and then released him in a cool area of my garden, where he lives. But not before taking a lot of photos and video!!

I suppose his dignity may have taken a hit…

As soon as he was misted he perked up.

I had never been able to see such a perfect little frog so close up. It was wonderful!

Just look at his lovely perfect skin. He looks like a tiny dinosaur creature!

Last video… I really couldn’t pick one, I was just so pleased with what I’d captured…

After I was done harassing him with my camera I misted him once more and released him in a shady spot with taller grass (where I most often see these froggies). Hopefully he had a good rest of his day! ๐Ÿ˜Š

‘Ello Neighbor ๐ŸฆŽ

Look at this cutie I saw when I was watering our new yard!

I saw him when I first set out the sprinkler and he hid inside. Still, just in case I took my phone the second time around and I was very glad because he was back, and I was able to get super close for some really adorable photos of my little neighbor:

He was a curly tail. Invasive species… they grow kinda big. I hope I see him again.

A Little Outing On A Hot Day๐ŸŒž๐ŸŒป

I’m still feeling super, super low, so I decided to go on a Little outing. I walked to Michaels and got some stickers, and then to Target, where I got one of their last two Bluey plushies. I really, desperately needed something new to hug that wasn’t expensive.

It was very hot outside, almost unbearably so, but the walk did me good all the same. I met a squirrel on the way, who really stared me down…

Here’s my Bluey plush that I got to cheer myself up:

Later, I did some more scrapbooking. Bluey made sure the colors were harmonious.

I did work on art in the afternoon though, so I promise it wasn’t a day without commission work.

Yard Work ๐Ÿฆ—

Even though I’m not doing okay mentally, I managed to be pretty helpful in the yard without as much whining as I feared I might have done. I ended up in a ton of pain but I helped raking leaves and with Christopher we put down two pallets of sod together. I also did a lot of pressure cleaning.

More than anything I am relieved that considering how I am currently feeling I managed to be cheerful most of the time because I really don’t want to bring my family down with my nonsense, again.

๐Ÿ› Working On The Yard ๐Ÿ›

My mom in law found a cute caterpillar while raking leaves so she let me take him to a safe place. He was such a cutie:

Here’s some video of the little bugger, too:

I really didn’t want to be the first one to tap out (and I only stopped maybe 15 minutes before everyone else, after working since before 8:00am) but I was actually crying by that point because of the terribly pain in my old wrist injury. I think it’ll be okay though.

These photos are from when I came back inside. Almost every area of uncovered skin looked like my arm. ๐Ÿ˜…

Oh yeah –the fridge behind me is the new fridge. It was delivered today. It’s a pretty nice fridge.

Here are some photos of our freshly sodded and pressure cleaned yard and house. The first pallet had some kinda bad squares, but Christopher said it will all grow in very nicely.

After going back in, I showered and sat down to relax for a bit. I had a package to open.

๐ŸŽˆ Birthday Present From Drake ๐ŸŽˆ

My friend Drake sent me a really fancy birthday present! It’s a very cute (but very good, it’s not a toy) crayon sharpener. I hope to use it on the next Little playdate.

Mojito was admiring it too!

Thank you Drakey for such a very lovely present. ๐Ÿ’•โœจ

๐Ÿฐ Scrapbooking Time ๐Ÿฐ

After that I worked a bit on my scrapbook and watched Crayon Shin-Chan. Mignon wanted to watch so I prepared his little chair for him to sit on.

And that was that for the day. Eventually I began working on chores. Grandma made spaghetti and meatballs for dinner. The day didn’t end on a bad note. Perhaps I’ll cheer up tomorrow, I’m going to try!

Urban Wildlife Encounter ๐Ÿข

Yesterday near the end of the day, after four commissions and a ton of chores, I went grocery shopping. On the way, I met a big turtle! So I put my little shopping cart to the side (I bring my own to the store so I can walk both ways) and got closer for some photos and video.

You can’t really tell in this photo but it was massive, over a full foot long.

I rarely see them this big, and only in the water. It was a good distance away from the water. Here’s a little video:

Originally, I intended to leave it alone then, and began to walk away. But it seemed to have veered towards the sidewalk, and the sidewalk is next to Pines Boulevard, which has busy and dangerous traffic. That aside, I was also concerned someone would simply take it away from its home. It was so massive and conspicuous. So I began to walk behind it to gently gear it back toward its water home.

I didn’t want to panic it into making a clumsy jump back into the water, so I did stop once it was closer to it. The interesting thing is, if you notice in the worn grass, this turtle has worn a regular path to where I found it. ๐Ÿ˜Š I hope it will continue to stay safe.

The area where this turtle lives is also full of iguanas. Everyone talks about how they are an invasive species and this is true, but I love them all the same.

A Li’l Snail’s Close Call! ๐ŸŒ๐Ÿœ

Recently, it’s been raining a lot. That means lots of snails on the sidewalk, and so, sometimes, after a rain, I go snail hunting.

These little guys, they’ll get to the middle of the sidewalk, and go to sleep when the rain stops and the clouds part. There, they’ll either be stepped on, or cook alive in the sun, or get eaten by birds (usually one, then the other). Often I’ll just pick them up and throw them on the grass to save them from this fate.

I rescued a ton this week, since I’d been looking to replenish my West Indian Bulimulus rout. They are sturdy little fellas and live a long time when properly cared for. One of my recent rescues has a bit of an enthralling story (for a snail.)

It’s this little guy, one of the smallest of his species that I have ever come across:

I only really spotted him because he was covered in black ants. ๐Ÿ˜ฑ I was sure he was dead/half eaten, but I got all the ants off somehow, including a persistent one that had made its way inside his shell. I took him home anyway. My guess is he was, maybe, 20 seconds away from being eaten.

An hour after I put him in the tank at home, he’d moved to the top of the lid, and hid. I didn’t get to see him move, but I knew he was alive!

I coaxed him out once he had some time to rest. He was in perfectly fine shape:

I’m sure he didn’t even know that he was seconds from being devoured quite literally alive. I hope he grows big and strong in his new digs. ๐Ÿ˜Š For now he’s in the quarantine tank with my other snails, being dewormed and making sure he has no other parasites.

Lawyer Appointment With Mom ๐Ÿ’•

Hello, everyone, how are you? Today my mom and I had an appointment with our immigration lawyer. It went very well. We are working on her case now which looks to be quite easy (hopefully –apparently.)

I’ve been enjoying dressing “fun” again, this was my outfit for today:

I’m really over the moon about this new bag that I got on Teepublic, it goes with a lot of my outfits:

After the lawyer we had a little late lunch. I can’t wait to have my mom here so on some days we can take a leisurely walk to a cafe like this one and have brunch together, and with all she’s done for me, to always be the one treating her. I want to see her smile more, and more easily, and be less tired.

We parted ways at Don Pan. She took a car home, while I walked the two miles to my home:

I got a whole bunch of things at Dollar Tree for the citizenship party on the way. It was hot outside but bearable since I walked in the shade. I happened upon a feisty crow who was probably guarding their nest:

When I got home my friend Al (once my boss, who along with his wife officiated our wedding) was already there. He’s been staying at our house often due to work. Christopher was home early since he’d been to take his second Covid shot, and feeling the first side effects.

After this I just worked on art all day. It was a good day. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Off To A Good Start โœจ๐ŸŒˆ

Hi everyone! ๐Ÿ‘‹ It’s a brand new week. I feel like I’ve started it on the right foot –I got up really early today, at 6:00am, and went on my morning walk. I’m starting to feel in the mood to take outfit-of-the-day selfies again it seems…

As part of my morning walk I went grocery shopping. Today’s interesting find was a brand new burrowing owl nesting site. I didn’t get too close, as it’s not allowed to disturb the owls.

I had a nice snack after I got home! I was quite worn out. My bags were very heavy.

After that I worked on my “100 Days Of Warm-Ups” stuff, on housework, and I studied for the citizenship test. Then I went on another walk.

On my second walk I saw a beautiful drop of sap dripping off a tree.

I don’t know why, but I thought it was lovely, like a precious jewel…

I also saw a monarch butterfly. It was massive! But I was unable to take a photo, it was too fast, had things to do and places to be. ๐Ÿฆ‹๐Ÿ’จ

I’m sorry to make today’s post so short. It’s such a busy week and going to get busier, but I’m going to try to post every day (or just about.)