The Caretaker

We are all captivated by stories of animals who exhibit human-like emotions or actions. Pat experienced something the other day that we thought was unusual.


A few weeks ago, Pat was cleaning out the refrigerator. She came across a dish of shelled English walnuts that had probably been there too long. She decided to toss them into the backyard where perhaps a bird might enjoy them. A while later she looked out the window and saw four crows prancing around the backyard and eating the walnuts. They were typical crows, black, shiny, brash, and noisy. Pat enjoyed the birds and after that first morning, threw out a piece of bread or something every day. The crows, being their obnoxious selves, stepped up their game. If Pat didn’t throw some food out before the crows got there, as soon as they arrived, they started raising hell. They were spoiled!


One morning, Pat threw out some bread crumbs and then went on about her business. Later, she looked out the window and saw a strange sight. There were four crows as usual, but one of the four was a pretty sorry looking specimen. Its feathers looked dull and dirty and it looked sick or beat up. And, the strange part was that one of the other crows was feeding it! The Good Samaritan bird would get a piece of bread off the ground, swallow it, then regurgitate it into the mouth of the frail-looking bird. It seemed quite strange. Was the bird sick? Was it young? If it could fly, why couldn’t it feed itself? Was the other bird its mother? Mighty strange. Mighty strange.

Dave Thomas


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