I swear, my backyard is like the Zone For Defective Wildlife.

In addition to the assorted not-overly-bright birds that take a header into the glass about once a day (although they generally fly away afterwards, looking dazed) and of course, Lumpy, we now have a Carolina wren with no tail. It’s got a little asymmetrical feather stub, about a third as long as the normal run of Carolina wren tails, as if his tail feathers have been pulled out or snapped off in some fashion. (I thought originally he might be a fledgling, but it’s got a definite sheared-off appearance.) Being a Carolina wren, he of course holds his tail nub in a very jaunty manner, which makes it even more tragic. I dubbed him “Stubby.” Do tails grow back? I realize I don’t know jack about birds and the permanence of feathers–I know they molt or something, but not when or how it works.

In other defective-wildlife news, Lumpy’s left bot has popped, I think, because the fur has grown back over it, and the whole area looks less swollen. So presumably somewhere there’s a nickel-sized botfly larvae burrowing or pupating or whatever it does, having finished its sojourn in Casa del Lumpy. The one on the right side, however, has not yet checked out, so Lumpy will remain Lumpy for a little while longer. (I dunno if I’ll be able to recognize him afterwards, although he should have some pretty distinctive scars for a little while.)

Never a dull moment, really…

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