Sunday, July 14, 2013


I went out this evening to sit outside and enjoy the waning light of the day. I poured a glass of red wine and stepped out to the stone benches in the yard.
I heard a commotion in the chicken pen, so I set my glass on the bench and walked down to assess the situation.
I peered through the wire front of the roosting shed and saw a turtle dove on the ground. Apparently the scratch feed that I put in the feeders for the chickens had lured her in, and she couldn't find her way out.
Snow Doves from my January 2011 post
Zeus, the mighty rooster was cackling, scratching and he must have looked like a bear to the dove, cowering in the corner.
I stepped in the fence and walked toward the roosting shed. Zeus apparently hasn't grasped the concept of size yet because he stood ready to repel me out of the shed. I put a tennis shoe on his behind and he flapped out, chicken cursing me all the way. 
The young dove threw herself against the wire fence enclosing the shed, in an attempt to escape. You could see terror in her eyes.
I inched in, talking in a low even-toned voice. She'd been evading Zeus, and trying to free herself from the room so long that she was exhausted.
I leaned over slowly and scooped her up gently in my hands. I stepped over to the door and opened my palms.
She sat there for a moment before launching out of my hands. She landed on a nearby branch, and turned to face me for a long moment before flying off.
I wish there was some way of knowing what was going through her head. She may have been saying, "You just wait mister, I'll leave a gift on your truck tomorrow." 
Or she might have been saying, "Thank you for your kind deed." 
I choose to believe, that like most of us, that she was grateful for a helping hand.


  1. What a sweet story, Rick. I am sure she is resting and thankful!

  2. I think she was grateful too Rick ;-)

  3. I'm sure she..or maybe "he"?..was very grateful. I'm betting a she's going on a non-chicken feed diet asap! I understand the temptation, I've been lured into many a snack that I wish someone had rescued me from!

  4. Anonymous10:22 PM

    Either way, you did a good thing!!

  5. You have such a way with words Rick - I think she was taking a photograph in her mind of the kind man who helped her.
    Chicken cursing is the best line ever though LMHO

  6. I think she was saying "thank you for your kind deed" :)

  7. What a sweet story. I believe she was grateful for your kindness.

  8. I think he was thanking you for your good deed.
    I have mourning doves residents here at my house. They make their nests in the hedge and they multiply.

  9. Of course, he was thanking you!! My birds communicate with me all the time!! They hang out, go off and have babies, then bring their babies back to show me before they head out.


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