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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Jack's gone 'home'.

 I feel like I should be setting off fireworks to celebrate what I thought would be a momentous occasion, but it all went off very smoothly and with little fuss.  Last night, during the early evening, I told hubby that I thought Jack would progress much quicker without the confines of the greenhouse.  Most of his time was spent getting excited when he saw the other birds, and trying to figure out a way to get to them.  As Jack was fluttering about and knocking himself against the sides of the greenhouse, hubby agreed with me.  For a couple of days, I had been feeling as if we were keeping Jack a prisoner, instead of caring for him..... especially as he was now feeding himself.  So, as it was still light and a pleasantly warm evening, we opened the greenhouse doors and went off to watch the second episode of Corrie.  After the programme had finished, we looked in the greenhouse and there was no sign of  him.  Well, that's it..... he had gone.  I sent a little prayer out into the universe for him and went on to think of the highly charged and emotional words that I would put together for this farewell post.

Funny Bird

I went to bed quietly confident that we had done the right thing........ only to be awakened by hubby excitedly running up the stairs at around 6 a.m.

"He's still in the greenhouse!"

Jack had just settled himself down, in a well-hidden place and hadn't left at all.  However, we left the doors open thinking that, now it was daytime and he was alert, he was bound to make a bid for freedom.  Wrong.  All he did was continue to peck seeds and chase off any other sparrows that dared to venture past the doorway!  We watched him for what seemed like hours and, not once, did he attempt to step outside.

I decided that he needed a little encouragement, so I went into the greenhouse and quietly began to tidy up and move some plants around.  Jack didn't like this as he now saw me as a threat.  After a while of dodging me, it wasn't long until he snuck out the door and round the side of the greenhouse.  I smiled and thought, "Yay, he's free."  I continued to potter about while discreetly watching to see what he would do.  Realising that he was in the open air, he paused momentarily and looked up at me with what I intrepreted as a bewildered look.

Then he hopped off into the hedgerow.  I went indoors for a cup of tea and came out to the greenhouse later to do some badly-needed potting on.  Lo and behold, there was Jack having a dustbath in the soil under the hedge.  As I worked, I watched him with the other sparrows, pecking up seed and crumbs of bread.  So much for his infant diet of cat food, seed, baby dinner and suet pellets!  He's attached himself to a group of sparrows that shelter in the leylandii hedge at the back of the garden and they don't seem to have any objections. 

I'll leave the doors of the greenhouse open tonight...... just in case he needs a warm place to lay his little head, but I somehow don't think he will take me up on the offer.  Now that he's in the big wide world, there's no going back.

Rock on little Jack Sparrow!


  1. Sounds like Jack was ready to go, even if he needed a gentle nudge. I hope you are able to pick him out for some time while he is boonding with his new pals.
    You have made an old man and a young bird very happy.
    You're a star.

  2. A fairy tale ending and a wonderful story, Pat yourself on the back.

  3. Lesley,

    just like real life, a little nudging always works wonders. Well Done.


  4. Hurray! I'm so glad to hear he has gone out into the world!
    Thanks for your good work saving wildlife!

  5. Lesley dear that is wonderful news, I am so happy for Jack and for you. You have done a fantastic job in keeping baby Jack alive and well so that this day could happen ... bless you.
    xoxoxo ♡

  6. That's great news..well done you:)))))

  7. Thanks Adrian. Let's hope Jack's mum and dad are finished with egg laying for this season. They will have to find a new nesting place next Spring as the gap under the eaves will be sealed up.

    Hi Johnny. It's such a long time since anyone called me a young bird. :D Lol, it's okay, I know what you meant. :O) It's easy to spot him for now as parts of the feather shafts are still bare and you can see the white bits on his tail and wings. When these have grown it, it probably will be difficult to identify him, if not impossible. ....... and less of the old man, since we are the same age. What birth sign are you? We could be astro twins! :O)

    Thanks David. I'm so pleased his encounter with humans turned out better than expected. I know how vulnerable birds are, but Jack must have been a real tough little cookie. I thought he'd learn from all the other birds, but I think it's he who is teaching them! There are baby birds in his group bigger than he is, waiting for their mum's to feed them, while he's scoffing up all the grub himself. :D

    Hi Codder John. Yes you're right..... we all need a little encouragement sometimes. A little shove is sometimes all it takes. :D

    Hi Kristi. It's a great result, isn't it. He's kept me very busy for the past couple of weeks.... and kept me off the drink! lol I didn't dare take a glass of wine while I had the task of manoeuvering food towards that tiny gaping beak. I've made up for it since though. :D

    Awww thanks Dianne. Birds are really special. We don't often get the chance to get so close to wild birds and it feels like such a privilege when it happens. He brought a lot of joy into my life over the past couple of weeks. :)

    Hi Helen. Thank you! I meant to answer you and everyone else much sooner, but I spent nearly all yesterday in the greenhouse catching up with work that I couldn't do while Jack was there. lol It was great watching him coming and going, along with his group. Hope everything's alright at your end. :)


    I was working in the greenhouse yesterday. Hubby brought me out a cup of tea and said he'd just seen Jack fly out of the hedge. I told him he must have been mistaken. Just as I looked up, Jack flew back into the hedge. He's now airborne! :O)

    Initially, we were going to release him up at the allotments, but we decided to let him go in our garden instead, as there is empty ground at the back and it's quiet and sheltered..... and we get to see him. :D

  8. p.s. Unknown to me, Jack was sharing the greenhouse with another baby. I'll post a photograph later. :D