Having been away for two weeks with no one staying in the house, you always feel a bit nervous when you come back, not knowing what to expect. Not that we ever have had any problems since we started living full time here at Roche Fleurie. This time, however, there was an unpleasant surprise when we turned the corner and first saw the porch. The glass in a window just above the door was smashed.
Your mind tries to make some sense of it. Why would someone break such a high window? Anyhow, the porch door does not locked. And soI thought it must be vandalism and was expecting to find the house door (inside the porch) to be broken too.
However the door was fine. I unlocked it, went in and checked all the other doors and windows. Everything was fine. Finding that there was no other damage, I went back to the porch to figure out what had gone through the window. I was expecting to find a rock, but there was no rock.
I quickly found the culprit - a grouse! It must have been flying at quite a speed, perhaps while pursued because not only did it smash the window, but there were shards of glass at the other end of the porch, about 4 meters away!
|Dead grouse with a key to give you a sense of scale|
It broke its neck on the impact. I do not know how long it had been there, but not very long it seems. I took this opportunity to look at it more closely. It is interesting to see that its legs are also covered with feathers. Grouse stay around all winter. They even spend snow storms under the snow. They have to be well insulated.
It is hunting season, and it is the time of the year when we see the greatest number of grouse around the house. We actually saw a live one minutes after we arrived, perhaps the dead one's mate. The birds might realize that there are gun shots all around us, but none near the house here.
I put the body outside. I do not expect it to last very long. We have foxes and coyotes. Even racoons might be interested. We also have vultures, but they have already left for the winter.
That was some impact. Grouse are bigger than I expected.ReplyDelete
Recently a chickadee hit a window and injured its wing. It managed to stay out of the way for two days, and then our old cat caught up with it.
Those are very unpleasant discoveries and are a real violation.ReplyDelete
At least it wasn't vandals. But what a creepy surprise.ReplyDelete
Yikes! Poor thing. But I suppose it was a quick death. Recently we've had many birds hitting the windows because there have been hundreds of migrating birds passing through the area, along with the winter ones that settle here for the long haul. After one of the big bangs, I went to the window and saw a robin struggling to regain its bearings. It did, and it seemed fine and flew away. Other birds have not been so lucky. Decals and decoys only help so much when the birds are this active. Sad, though.ReplyDelete
We have the same experience but it is the but it is the first time a bird goes through the window. This time of the year it is flycatchers that most often hit the windows.Delete
What a heart- stopping moment as you turned the corner. I have had birds crashing into windows before, but never going right through them. The poor thing, but how interesting to get a close up look at a grouse. You used to hear them on the moors near where I grew up but I never saw one.ReplyDelete
We hear them in Spring. What we hear are the males drumming on their chests to call the females.Delete
A very unpleasant moment when you turned the corner and saw the smashed window. It will have been a relief to see that it was only a grouse. Nevertheless, poor bird, he or she had a sad end of life.ReplyDelete
At the speed it was going, it would have been an instantaneous death.Delete
The idea of a bird breaking a window would never have occurred to me either. Pauvre petite bête.ReplyDelete
Aha! The robot step!!! The screen doesn't display it; I need to scroll to see it and didn't know it was there before now.
The system randomly stops comment every now and then.Delete
Your blog has just received 15 hits from my trying to leave a comment on your previous post and this one. Have discovered the robot step only this morning; one needs to scroll to the bottom of the page again to even discover it's there, let alone fill in the number box. Tried leaving a comment twice during the first week of your last post, and twice more this morning; apparently I must be a robot because on that page they're now calling me "Anonymous" and refused to post the comment either time. If you ever decide to start writing surreal short fiction, Alain, I can suggest a topic for you...!ReplyDelete
See my comment above. Now that yours comments are published, it should be fine again.Delete
Strange as I immediately thought the break was bird shaped. When I was teaching a barn owl did a similar thing but didn't break the window. The school hall was in the centre of the building and at a higher level than the rest of the building, The owl had not realised this and smashed into a hall window and sadly ended up in the same state as the grouse.ReplyDelete
Such beautiful birds, I found a pheasant outside of my office that had flown into a window. It was so beautiful that I took it to a taxidermist and had it preserved.ReplyDelete
Glad that were not thieves, Alain. It's pity this grouse finished its life so strange.ReplyDelete
Having experience a house break in Alan - I can well imagine how your stomach must have tied in knots!ReplyDelete
Such a sad ending for a beautiful creature. The grouse shooting season here ends on 10 December.
Hello Alain, that must have made quite a loud thump, poor bird. We've occasionally had birds hit windows and sometimes you see them underneath the window, on their back with their legs in the air, not moving (if the local wildlife hasn't made off with them first). Other times, the only evidence is a concentration of fine dust in the shape of splayed wings across the glass.ReplyDelete
Alain I am glad it was not a human that smashed the window and broke in.ReplyDelete
But I am sorry to see the dead bird .. it must have been extremely frightened to hit at such an impact. At least you found out what had happened and that saves you some worry and stress. I hope the mate can move on safely.
Poor grouse, I'm so glad it wasn't human damage. We quite often have birds flying into the windows but thank goodness, so far, none has broken one, a nasty shock for you.ReplyDelete
Whlle I'm sorry for the grouse, like the others, I'm glad it wasn't human vandals!ReplyDelete