The Outsider: Going animal crackers
|By Will Jones - The Outsider | April 19, 2018|
Why shouldn’t ducks have a choice, too? I mean, if I want to eat loads of unhealthy junk until it makes me ill, I can, but ducks, they seem to have an army of human dietary do-gooders looking after them.
“Don’t feed the ducks bread, it’s not good for them!” That’s what the lady barked at me as I stood in a park in London with my infant son, throwing chunks of sliced white to the waterfowl on the muddy brown pond.
“You heard me. No feeding the ducks!”
“But they like it, look...” The ducks were hoovering up the bread, fighting for it.
“It’s irresponsible, it’s unhealthy for them and it promotes dependency on humans ...”
The interfering do-gooder went on, and on. I got bored and left. That was eight years ago and I’ve
since found out that I shouldn’t have fed hedgehogs their favourite nighttime snack of bread and milk, either. Bummer ... for hedgehogs.
And then, last week someone informed me that feeding the birds, with nothing other than proper bird food, at a proper feeder in your garden is wrong, too. It seems that the little birds, the chickadees, sparrows and nuthatches who forage around the forest edge (your garden) get pushed out by the greedy blue jays and grackles, so losing their favoured feeding areas and consequently starve as they search for food elsewhere.
Holy moly, just when I thought I was doing some good. But, food for thought, I guess, so long as you’re not a sparrow. And don’t feed the deer either, if you live near the highway. Why? Because those dopey deer do not stop, look and listen before they cross. In fact, they seem to wait until cars are approaching before strolling
onto the road. And, while the crows and ravens like roadkill, the OPP can charge you with causing a car accident after a passing motorist has mown down Bambi and careened off into a ditch.
Is it okay to feed bears, maybe? I have been known to do this, albeit they are unannounced guests at the table I call my garbage. And raccoons, too. They seem to be having a great time in Toronto, tucking into tasty morsels taken from the ‘raccoon proof’ bins that the city spent millions on providing. Is this an example of government ineptitude and lack of respect for the clever little stripey faced critters or perhaps a municipal conspiracy,
a double bluff, to rid the city of raccoons by allowing them to eat junk until they explode?
And so, taking matters into my own hands, I have decided to be proactive. I’m going to clear-cut my entire property. That way the birds will have nowhere to perch, the deer and bears nowhere to shelter and I’ll be damn sure not to be inadvertently allowing the beavers to chow down on any tree species that some tree hugger thinks might give them a belly ache, too.
Feeding animals used to be a pleasurable
pasttime for those who liked watching
wild critters, and said critters seemed to
like it, too. Today, however, it’s a no no
for all kinds of reasons.
WILL JONES - is The Outsider