Actually you know what. Just don’t mow. Get rid of your lawnmower. Turn your whole yard into a wildflower field or an edible garden. Lawns are the invention of the upper class to show wealth through wasted plots of grass that is meticulously tended for no reason other than to be grass. It’s literally an empty plot of land they kept because they had so much money they didn’t need it to grow food. Not using a yard as just a yard is an act of rebellion.
One of the main industries still supporting lawns is chemical pest control companies, and they’re also responsible for the insecticides that crashed the bird populations in the 40s and 50s as well as a lot of what’s killing bees and butterflies now. The herbicides they produce specifically targets “bad” plants like dandelions, buttercups, and clovers, which are plants bees rely on for early spring feeding. Grass is just grass; it would be great for feeding small mammals if people would let it grow more than three inches, but they won’t.
So, yeah. Kill lawnmower culture. Plant some native flowers. Grow some vegetables and fruit trees. Put out bird feeders and bee sugar spots and homes for both. Be kind to bugs and birds and rabbits and opossums and whoever else might wander by. Make your neighborhood a lot more beautiful.
hello everyone, today I’m bringing you: a Fantastic Beats AU where everything is the same except everyone has a dæmon
disclaimer: this AU is very self-indulgent and I haven’t thought out all details and impracticalities of it, so please don’t nitpick. anyway,
- only witches and wizards are born with dæmons, muggles don’t have them
- a lot of dæmons settle as birds seeing as it’s more convenient form that can follow its human when they travel via flying objects like broomsticks
- both Grindelwald and Graves have large birds of prey as their dæmons; the birds are different, but look similar enough to be mixed up by anyone who doesn’t pay too much attention (this is another reason for Graves to be extremely salty once they find him after the whole Grindelwand infiltration incident; “I can’t believe you fools couldn’t tell one bird from another,” he keeps saying. “Maybe I should summon that Scamander guy back in America and ask him to give you all a few zoology lessons.”)
- Tina’s dæmon is an english setter, Queenie’s is a dove
- Credence’s dæmon is a black cat, for two reasons, one of them being me finding it aesthetically pleasing, and the second is that it’d probably piss Mary Lou off even more because there’s a lot of superstitions around black cats plus all that stuff about them being familiars of witches
- when Credence was a child, and his dæmon could still change its form, it took shape of small animals/birds/insects so that Credence was able to hide it from Mary Lou in his pockets; then it settled as a black cat and Credence started having a really hard time keeping it from Mary Lou’s eyes
- I wasn’t sure about Newt’s dæmon, only knowing that I wanted it to be an animal he can carry around on his shoulder so it’d constantly pick fights with Pickett much to Newt’s agitation; then someone I was discussing this AU with suggested an occamy and I ran with it. maybe it doesn’t exactly fit him personality-wise, but it’s my favourite magical creature so I just kind of. put two of my faves together. personal bias much? why yes, absolutely
- (or, you know, Pickett himself could be Newt’s dæmon instead, now that I think of it; those drawings can be read as either of these two options)
- yes, magical creatures can also be dæmons, because why the hell not; I guess it’s just not that common, and if your dæmon settles as one it’s a sign that you’re most likely an eccentric and unpredictable person (and isn’t that what annoys other people)
okay I’m done and please for the love of god don’t delete this long ass comment
Here’s a list of things nobody told me before I got my bird. You’re welcome to fact check and add your own experiences! I hope this helps someone!
Possibly disturbing images of animal neglect below.
NEVER get a pet bird who lives alone a mirror for their cage. They can choose their own reflection as a mate, which needless to say isn’t healthy and can be extremely sexually frustrating. It’s much healthier to get even small birds foraging toys to entertain them.
ALL birds need lots of social interaction if they’re going to remain mentally healthy! This is especially important for birds that live in large groups in the wild like cockatoos, finches, and parakeets, but also true for “loner” birds like Senegals and African Greys. Without the proper social interactions (hours a day with people or other birds) birds can get bored and pick up destructive habits like feather pulling, biting, and screaming, and even develop mental illnesses like depression or anxiety. Yes, even parakeets.
Feather pulling removes a bird’s main way of staying warm, which can lead to life threatening things like hypothermia.
Parrot’s body temperatures are around 103 degrees Fahrenheit, much higher than humans, and largely thermoregulate through their feet. Because of that and their small body size, they can get hyper or hypothermia fairly easily when compared to humans. In hot months it’s important to provide them with a shallow dish of water they can cool off in, and in cold months, a heating pad or perch they can sit on to keep warm. Parrots do best in a stable, relatively warm environment; while they can take slight changes, drastic changes in temperature can be very detrimental. Non-tropical/arid birds are a bit different from what I hear, so can’t really talk about them.
Parrot beaks constantly grow, so it’s important to provide lots of chewing fodder (I like to call them sacrifices) for your parrot to chew on or get their beaks trimmed by a professional.
These can be hard calcium treats, wood, and other natural materials. Some can be plastic but I wouldn’t recommend those as they can be swallowed and impede digestion or become a choking hazard.
Birds are prey animals! They’re typically very nervous because they’ve been hardwired for centuries to be on the lookout for things that want to eat them. They’ll get nervous around new things, strange noises, and new people. They can learn to overcome some fears by careful desensitization, lots of social interaction, and a calm, careful owner. It’s VERY important to keep them away from predatory animals (dogs, cats, etc.), as it can cause unnecessary stress on the animals. If they absolutely have to interact, do so in a controlled environment and with one or both in separate carriers, cages, or pens. Know your animals, pay careful attention to their body language, and be prepared to step in if either looks stressed or aggressive.
My parrot Apollo meeting my friend’s cat, the right way.
Just like humans, birds have dietary needs that must be met if they’re to remain healthy. A few of the most important are Vitamin D (sunlight!), calcium (especially important in hens), and protein (required to grow healthy beaks, claws, and feathers). The easiest ways to take care of the first two is to provide your bird with lots of sunlight (direct or indirect depends on the bird) and a constant supply of cuttlebones or calcium treats. There are several different diet plans out there for all kinds of birds, but all agree that birds CANNOT live off nothing but seeds. This can cause fatty liver disease and early death, even in otherwise healthy birds. All parrots are usually fed a diet of pellets, fruits, and vegetables, but the ratios really depend on who you ask.
Here’s a few food pyramids for parrots:
Birds absolutely CANNOT be fed:
Any greasy, salty chips/popcorn or any processed “human food”
Alcohol (I shouldn’t have to say this)
Feel free to add on
Before you feed your bird ANYTHING, please look it up and make sure it’s safe!
This is a crested auklet (Aethia cristatella). Like many seabirds, they are socially monogamous, which means they spend an awful lot of time with their mate. And boy, do they dedicate a lot of time to attracting and keeping that mate!
Like many other birds, they squawk and show off their beautiful voices.
Like many other birds, they display their fancy ornaments.
But what sets crested auklets apart from all the other birds?
THEY SMELL LIKE ORANGES.
You heard that right! Crested auklets are one of the only bird species that use olfactory signaling during the breeding season. Both males and females give off a distinctly citrusy odor during the breeding season, and perform a special courtship display (called the ruff-sniff) when one bird shoves its face into the other’s feathers.
The closely-related whiskered auklet also smells like oranges.
more from the taz girl scout camp au! julia, who is a Wolf Girl, writes a letter home to her next door neighbor & best friend. her counselors ram & raven (real names hurley & sloane, who spend most of their time off smooching in the woods) are nothing but encouraging.
(“are we going to see any wolves on this hike, ms maureen??” “sweetheart, wolves aren’t native to this region. there might be some coyotes, though!” “…i want to go home”)
speaking of being a massive ecology nerd, guess what season it is, folks!
That’s right, it’s FLEDGLING BIRD SEASON here in North America, which means it’s time for an annual reminder that most species of birds have almost no sense of smell. Someone probably told you that if you touch a baby bird, the mother will smell you on it and reject her baby. THAT IS NOT THE CASE.
Pictured: a young Mourning Dove, after being rescued from the tender mercies of my dog, circa spring 2005. It’s a fledgling! Note how it has most of its feathers, but still looks a bit awkward and scruffy, and, being unable to properly fly, can be caught by an elderly husky or a child.
Hatchlings: IF it is covered in fluffy down (or partly naked) and cannot flutter successfully, it’s a hatchling, and has fallen from its nest prematurely. Look for the nest- if you find it and can reach it, return baby and then gtfo and let the parents return. If you can’t find the nest, or if you find it in pieces on the ground, use a small box lined with dryer lint or dog hair or similar fluff and attach as close as possible to where you found the bird or where you think the nest was. Return baby!!!!
Fledglings: If you spot a young bird covered with feathers on the ground, chances are it’s a fledgling (bird tween, can flutter) who is not doing well in flying 101, but it is probably NOT injured or sick. Hanging out on the ground is part of the learning to fly process! If it looks like it’s in immediate danger (i.e. of being run over, stepped on, or eaten by a cat or dog), the best thing you can do for it is to gently scoop it up and place it in the branches of a nearby tree or shrub, and then LEAVE. The parents are likely nearby, and will return once the coast is clear of humans/predators. If it flutter-hops away from you and you can’t catch it, then don’t worry! It just successfully avoided a predator (you), and therefore can probably continue to do so.
DON’T DON’T DON’T: Try to feed it, bring it into your house or car, or take it to your local vet or animal shelter.
IF it IS actually for-real injured, you can catch it and contact a local wildlife rehabilitation professional (and then listen to whatever they tell you), but keep in mind that they get a LOT of fledgling birds, and those birds have a pretty high mortality rate. They may tell you that there is nothing you or they can do but allow nature to take its course, and that’s hard, but important to hear and respect.