Meadow Mueller 07/2003 - 04/2015

Meadow Mueller 07/2003 - 04/2015

December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

 Something to think about...

The Cat Carol

The cat wanted in to the warm warm house, but no one would let the cat in, It was cold outside on Christmas Eve. She meowed and meowed by the door.


The cat was not let in the warm warm house, and her tiny cries were ignored. It was a blizzard out, the worst of the year. There was no place for her to hide.

Just then a poor little mouse crept by, he had lost his way in the snow. He was on his last legs and was almost froze.

The cat lifted him with her paw. She said, "Poor mouse, do not be afraid, because this is Christmas Eve. On this freezing night, we both need a friend. I won't hurt you. Stay by my side."

She dug a small hole in an icy drift. This is where they would spend the night. She curled herself 'round her helpless friend, protecting him from the cold.

When Santa came by at the end of the night, the reindeer started to cry. They found the cat lying there in the snow, and they could see that she had died.

He lifted her up from the frozen ground, and placed her into the sleigh.

It was then he saw the little mouse wrapped up. She kept him warm with her fur.

"Oh thank you Santa for finding us... Dear cat, wake up, we are saved!"

"I'm sorry mouse, but your friend has died. There's nothing more we can do."

"On Christmas Eve she gave you her life, the greatest gift of them all."


Santa lifted the cat up into the night sky and laid her to rest among the stars. "Dear mouse, don't cry, you are not alone, you will see your friend every year. Each Christmas a cat constellation will shine... to remind us that her love's still here.

Yes, it's a children's story but we can really learn something from it, and our animal friends.

Have a wonderful holiday season, whoever you are, wherever you are, however you celebrate it.  

See you all soon!

December 15, 2011

Yet Another Moonie Update

So, Christmas is less than 2 weeks away and it's go go go around here.

We are quite certain this is Moonie's first Christmas.  We cannot nail down his age exactly but do know he's not a year old yet.  Does he know what Christmas is?  Probably not exactly but I do think they feel the energy about this time of the year.  Take Misfit (our other Budgie) as an example.  Every Christmas season, she spends about 2 weeks waking up at 4:30am on her own, ringing her bell and wanting to get up.  And right after New Years, she goes back to her old routine of sleeping in until 7am.  What's up with those 2 weeks?

How will it be with Moonie?  I guess we will see. 

The past couple weeks he's been getting a feel for it; he's been exploring the decorated living room and placed here and there for my own personal entertainment.  Why not?  It's good interaction for him and I, and I can take some festive pics with my boy in the meantime.  Moonie just might make a personal Christmas card one year.  He's one easy going bird and mostly goes with the flow.

Other than that, he's just doing his thing...  eating, sleeping, and squawking like Budgies do, and his time with Misfit is an adventure on it's own.  You never know how she's going to be with him.  One day okay, another day she's back to her aggressive self.  I still believe they are good for each other as company, even in separate cages, but side by side.  Moonie really wants to be her friend and he mimics her at times.  When she eats, he eats.  When she plays, he plays.  He seldom touches his mineral block unless he sees Misfit pecking at hers'.  And if I move Misfit from their area as she likes to sit on the kitchen table, he gets quite antsy and vocal until she comes back to the top of the fridge with him.  Moonie doesn't seem to care much about being on the table with the kitchen window to look out of...  unless Misfit is on the table with him.  It's funny really.  I mean, Misfit can be pretty aggressive to him but he still wants to be around her.  And while Misfit can be the total b*tch, if I move Moonie out to the living room with me, she too will get quite vocal in his absence.  And Moonie hears Misfit's calls, and suddenly he wants little to do with me and to return back to his cage.  Silly birds.

Well, here's some photos of late, enjoy...

There is a noticeable size difference with these two and I say Moonie is poking fun at Misfit with his "Who's the fat birdy in the house?"  pose.

One of their more peaceful moments.

Moonie exploring the Christmas tree for the very first time.  He moved around the inside of the tree and popped his head out here and there.  The lights do not get hot in case someone wondered.

A close up of a cute moment.

I do wonder what he thinks of all the different shaped/sized and colored ornaments?

He's our little boy and we love him.

December 9, 2011

Snowy Owl Invasion

In recent weeks, Snowy Owls are being reported seemingly everywhere.  I recon it's an irruption of the Owls and not certain at the moment why they are on the move and settling in around us here in the GTA and other areas.

A female Snowy Owl Angie and I viewed across from a pier in Whitby this month.

While it's amazing to see these beautiful birds of prey; as always, we must use care and respect with them.  They are living beings, and while not human, they have emotions too.  And simply put, everybody wants to get a photograph of a Snowy Owl...  so, yes, take a photo and take home a visual memory of this majestic bird you have encountered.  But please limit your time viewing the bird and also keep your distance.

I've only seen two Snowy Owls in the wild myself.  Both were in very well protected spots along the lake shore, being surrounded by water.  No sane person would dare swim across the near freezing lake at this time of year.  And if covered in ice, same thing about attempting to cross it.  And the Owls have been at such a distance that nobody is invading their space/comfort zone.

But I have heard stories of other sightings where the Owls are in reach.  And people seem to have no concern for the Owls and attempt to approach them for better viewing and better photographs.  Not everybody has a mega thousand dollar camera and lens set-up so the photos will never be clear unless you are pretty much face to face with the subject.

People are walking on private property, not caring who owns the farm land the Owl has stopped in on.  And this is infuriating to many property owners.  Would you want a stranger walking into your backyard because he felt it was his right to see a bird on your property?  Imagine you are having your Sunday morning coffee, you look out your kitchen window and find 3 strangers with cameras walking about your backyard.  Wouldn't that just piss you right off?

So, wherever you go this winter, and if you see a Snowy Owl since I assume more sightings will be coming about...  please enjoy the Owls but respect them, their space and the land owners (if the Owl is on private property).

Here is the very first wild Snowy Owl we have ever seen, back in February of 2010.  These are grainy heavily cropped shots but still a lifetime memory for me.

And lastly, with this irruption of Snowy Owls, I must add that some may come into trouble for one reason or another.  It's not uncommon for an Owl to be out on the road with a fresh mouse kill as an example.  And these birds aren't too familiar with life here in the big city, not exactly knowing the dangers of sitting down to a meal on a roadway.  Some may get hit by cars and may need our help.  Once again, as an example, and there are many others which I won't get into.

So, if you or someone you know comes into contact with an injured Owl; please view these links on what to do, how to help, who to call, etc.  All courtesy of The Owl Foundation.  Here is a webpage to help you locate a wildlife rehab centre near you.  The link to general information isn't working for me so here is a list for you to review that deal with any encounter, with any Owl or other bird species at any time of the year.

Happy birding!

If you or someone you know has found an injured or otherwise distressed raptor, it is of utmost importance to get in touch with and transfer the animal to a licensed wildlife rehabiliator as soon as possible. This is in the very best interests of any wildlife you find and can mean the difference between life and death.
Please do not attempt rehabilitation of wildlife on your own. Communication with experienced, licensed rehabilitators is key to providing the best care for sick, injured or orphaned wildlife. Licensed rehabilitators have been specially trained for triage, convalescence and paliative care of wild animals.

Most provinces of Canada allow their citizens to hold onto wildlife for a maximum of 24 hours at which time the wildlife must be released or transferred to an authorized wildlife rehabilitator. It is illegal to maintain wildlife beyond this 24 hour limit without special permitting from the Ministry of Natural Resources. These regulations have been set in place to protect our native wildlife from typically well-meaning, but inexperienced people. Animals, especially those injured, sick or orphaned, require special care and medical needs that most people are unable, unwilling or too niave to provide properly.

If you have found a raptor in distress, please visit the Wildlife International page (my link above) for listings of rehabilitators in your area. You may also contact your local Humane Society or Ministry of Natural Resource office for information.

You can be doing more harm than good. Raptor throat anatomy is very different from yours.
You can drown a raptor by putting fluids and food into the wrong area.
If the bird you have found is showing signs of sickness or injury such as difficulty breathing, bleeding, stumbling, fractures or other trauma, the animal will require immediate medical attention. If you have trouble finding a local rehabilitator, consider contacting your local veterinarian. Many veterinarians can do simple, cheap procedures such as wing wrapping, pain relief and fluid therapy until a rehabilitator can be contacted.

Temporary Housing for Transport to a Rehabilitator:
You Will Need

Cardboard box with lid
Pen or Boxcutter
Towel or other soft cloth
Work gloves

Find a cardboard box approximately half again as long as the bird and twice as wide. The bird should be able to sit upright in the box without bumping its head against the top. The box should not be so large as to allow the bird to walk around. The idea is to keep the bird contained in one spot, but as comfortable as possible. If the box is too big the bird can hurt itself as it fights to escape. Broken wings can be rotated improperly and blood circulation can be cut off.

Prepare the box by punching holes from the inside out along all walls approximately 2/3 of the way up. This will allow ventilation for the bird to breathe while it remains in the box. You don't have to go overboard. Five - ten holes per side, depending on the size of the box, is enough. If you have access to a boxcutter, you can cut one inch holes 2/3 of the way up from the inside out (two - three per side).
Place a towel or blanket in the bottom of the box. This provides cushioning, warmth and gripping substrate for the animal.

In most cases an orphaned, sick or injured raptor will be fairly easy to contain by simply picking it up. It is helpful to throw a towel or blanket over the bird as you approach. Scoop the animal and towel up together. The bird should grab the towel, not you. It is suggested that you have a pair of work gloves with you as well since raptors will often use their last bit of strength to protect themselves. Do not leave the towel over the bird once it is contained in the box.

If the bird is capable of walking just a touch too fast to capture single-handedly, ask a friend to help corral the animal into a corner or directly into the box (put the box on its side on the ground).

If the bird cannot sit up in the box, use a second towel to encircle its body and prop its head onto the higher surface like a pillow. This will also keep the bird from falling over during transport.

Keep the box covered (either with a lid or blanket) as raptors have a tendancy to escape.

Maintain the box/bird in a dark area at room temperature (~22ºC/70ºF). Keep the bird from stressful stimulae such as noise, children, pets and television. A stressed hawk will freeze and stare with mouth gaping and wings out, if capable. Owls can display stress in many ways including playing dead, snapping their beaks, hissing and fluffing up. Raptors can pant if stressed. Many scared raptors will show defense tactics such as lunging with their beaks or grabbing with their feet. Be careful.

During transport, do not play music and keep talking to a minimum. Keep an ambient temperature in the vehicle and try to place the box in an area that will not receive direct sunlight.

The rehabilitator you contact will give you further instructions geared toward the species and injury you are dealing with.


Baby owls are very cute balls of fluff and can be very accomodating and fun to have around.  Don't get sucked in!

These little guys need their parents, not humans. They should never be coddled, petted or passed around. This is stressful and inappropriate. They are wild animals who need to stay wild for successful release back to nature.

Owls are not pets.