Friday, January 22, 2010

Mr. Snailsy

Regarding the fate of Mr. Pidggy, I received an email from Project Wildlife today. They regretfully informed me that Mr. Pidggy was too sick/injured and did not survive. Through the tears in my eyes, I wonder if I made the right choice to take him to the clinic, or if he would have been better served dying in his natural environment. Starving to death seems a miserable way to go, but at least he would have been near his home and the ocean and maybe would have found a way to adapt to his handicap, although I doubt it seriously. I suppose in the big picture, I should worry more about how much I drive my car, or fly in an airplane, or buy food from the grocery story, than the fate of a stupid pigeon.....but I can't seem to make my brain work like that.
One goes out.......

While Mr. Pidggy's fate was being sealed, another wildlife story was brewing in my very own bedroom (wait a minute....get your head out of the gutter). Within the first couple of weeks of living here in San Diego, I was gifted a couple of shells that I found absolutely stunning (remember I am a beach rookie, so stunning is a relative term!!). To add to my growing collection, I picked up a third one day while down at the beach and was contemplating an art project I’d like to do with this one in particular. This shell was different. I found the colors sharp and rich, and so fine that I thought the shell looked the way most do after you coat it with some nice clear paint or shellac. Not at all your typical beach find.

Fast forward a month and a half. The shell had been living on my nightstand happily with it’s two other cohorts when one morning I woke up to find it stuck to my table with a fragile film. I gasped as I thought my shell had contained a creature and I had, in my ignorance, killed it while I slept. I examined the inside and found what looked to be the remains of a nice little snail and I felt terrible, but left it sitting on my table for another few days feeling like a neglectful murderer. 3 days later, the shell was again stuck to my table, and I thought things were getting weird. It was clearly dead, wasn’t it?? A couple more days passed and I found the shell stuck to the side of my table. Enough idiocy, I took the shell into the bathroom, filled up the sink with a little water, and let the little creature come out and play…..which he eventually did. No wonder the shell was richly colored and beautiful. It was still housing a living animal!!

The irony is that I tried very hard to help the pigeon and sweated and worried over it's situation and he died. Yet, through neglect, I managed to keep a pet snail alive in my room for over 2 months, without it (really) going anywhere, dying, or even slugging me in my sleep!! Too bad I really love birds and am kind of grossed out by snails. Here's a shot of the dumb snail slouching away to do whatever it is they do in our yard. I'm sure he's adding to the ecology of the neighborhood in a myriad of useful ways. Unfortunately, one of them is not a contributing member of the food chain, where birds like Mr. Pidggy can slurp him up for breakfast, even with only half a beak.

1 comment:

EndlessBikeCo. said...

Those snails are so beautiful. Very similar to the ones we have here in Appalachia. I'm sorry to hear about Mr. Pidggy, but Rebecca, you tried girl and that's all you can do.