Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Visitors To My Backyard and Memories

Inspiration for this post comes from the latest post by My Thai Friend,about birds and dogs .I have always loved birds as long as I can remember, altho some of my memories or not from just seeing them and taking pictures as I do today .My first memory comes from as a five year old kid growing up in rural South Carolina, in the 40's . My dad was always teaching my Brother and me about life and living, every occasion he got , this time he was showing us how to make a sling shot from a tree branch and rubber from a old tire inter tube, he made a good one and to show us how it worked he said" see that bird in that tree" ,he shot a rock and Bonk, he hit the bird and killed it , now another lesson in life comes quickly , and "remember that whatever you shoot and kill you have to eat" well we ate that little bird after Mom cooked it , and cried the whole time . But needless to say we ate lots of little birds and frogs and squirrels,and rabbits.My brother and our friends loved to play in the woods in our forts and tree houses , and we always had our trusty sling shots with us . When we were teens we moved to Florida for a few years and I can clearly remember early in the morning walking or riding to school ,seeing the power lines just filled with wild parakeets of every color ,I read a few years later, where the last male parakeet that was in capitive died ,gone forever. During my adult life I had lived in Oregon for a few years and can remember driving along the country road and seeing ,red winged black birds sitting on all the farm fences, and wild pheasants,running thru the rye grass fields, now they are no more or very few , gone now or soon ,forever.I could talk about memories and birds forever , but then it would be a book and not a post.
Well, you might ask "what happened to all these birds that caused them to disappear",well I have my theory, and here goes > The state road crews used DDT to keep the grass off the sides of the roads and ,farmers use pesticides to kill the bugs from their crops and people use weed killer and pesticides to control the insects and unwanted grass around their house and this has resulted in the killing off off many species of insects, the beautiful butterflys that used to visit your gardens and flowers and many, many birds.We have a beautiful yard and hundreds of plants and flowers growing , if the grass gets to high or in the flower beds or around the rocks for the walkways , I get off my lazy a-- and pull the weeds and cut the grass with a blade , not a mower to kill lots of bugs and insects in the process and never use any kind of pesticides to control anything , and be careful of all the fertilizers you use these can kill too, but if you use these thing go ahead, but don't cry when no birds come around to sing you a love song and you look up in one of my trees and see a bird nest with a couple little heads sticking out saying " the next worm is mine ",and yours are empty of birds, And you look over and my yard is full of birds , butterflys , and my pond has frogs and snakes and winged vistors all the time , and I don't even feed them. they eat the bugs if the population gets out of hand , altho they do love some table scraps every once in a while , and you have no vistors to your yard all I can say to you is SOM NAM NA. And stop being one of the problems and save the birds. Here are a few pictures of a couple vistors to our back-yard hope you enjoy them.
"This is my post and I'm sticking by it" as the song goes Malcolm

4 comments:

Martin in Bulgaria said...

Good on you Malcolm, the fault of and increasing extinct wildlife is iom the main chemical based. I too was taken my Dad to the woods and he used a rubber sling shot to kill wood pigeons, which we took home and ate. I never could understand how accurate these things could be. He also used to catch a wild duck on ocassion from rivers and ponds and we'd have that for evening dinner, this is not the reason for the lack of wildlife. It is the commercial aspect that destroys. In my village almost every man here hunts for rabbits, hares, birds, boar purely for private consumption yet the balance of wildlife remains. We have so much wildlife here you can't take it on on board. this is s chemical free environment, but this will change as the EU has chemical based ideas to improved crop yields and we all know what that leads to - you have just written it. Why are industries so greedy and short sighted?

MALCOLM said...

Matin, Thanks for stopping by and the great comment , I was so happy to hear that you dad took you out to teach you about wildlife too.What a different world this would be if Dads were the same today, but the sad thing is Mom and Dad are out working hard to pay for those new NIKES and X_BOXES, the staff of life for the young folks nowdays , oh I almost forgot the almighty CELL PHONE.
And yes, the chemicals are killing a lot of things our kids and grandkids will never get to see even if they wanted .Malcolm

Basilseven said...

Malcom,
Enjoy your blog. Your story remind me of my childhood. We have several birdfeeders in our backyard but do not have as many pretty birds as yours. Keep it coming. I spent two summers in Ubon when I was 11-12. Have not have a chance to return.

Bodhi Bum said...

It just seems to be the eventual outcome when man multiplies, the birds and the bees, and all the critters slowly disappear. I agree that it's not only hunting that has contributed to this, although it is a factor. It's everything put together, chemicals, habitat loss, prey loss, and hunting. Mostly it's taking their land and forcing them out.

I remember having a conversation with my old Thai GF about how she swore she used to see tigers in the forest behind her village up in Surin. I just saw a BBC story saying that there is something like 10 or so different large wild cat species in Thailand, but most of them haven't been seen in decades. I took a motorbike trip up through the Cardamon mountains of Cambodia where the last of the SEAsian tigers live, but not hide or hair of one was seen. Or has been seen in years.

Sad how they all just disappeared. But at least you can conserve what little is left in your patch of land, Malcolm. Every bit counts.

Bodhi