“Oh, this mouse’s pinkie fell from somewhere,” Asmita Puri came out of the house and approached the pinkie. That little creature was like a lump of red flesh.
This is not a baby rat but it was a newly hatched baby sparrow. “Where did you come from?” said Asmita. There was no nest around. She picked up that lump of meat with the small beak. That was breathing. Confused! Did she let it back on the floor?
“How worried her mother must be?,” said Asmita to herself.
“My daughter Purnima, who went out in the morning, has not come home yet, the mother of this bird must be in the same pain,” she became even more worried.
She sat and watched for about an hour. Sparrows were flying around, but no one came near to rescue this chick. There were 2-4 insects moving around. Nearby, the police whistled, “Stay inside.” During the lockdown, I had to obey the police.
The chick was still breathing. Asmita did not want to leave. She was convinced that chick would die or be killed. Finally, She picked it up and entered the house. She learned from her late husband, Purna Puri, that she should love everyone. Asmita remembers her sociologist husband.
What would that little creature do? She was worried. She kept it in a small paper cartoon. Then, She called her daughter (Purnima) who was interested in nature. Purnima reached shortly.
As soon as she reached home, all of sudden came out of Purnima’s mouth, ‘How small, do not even have an eye, will it live Mummy?. Purnima held the chick in her palm. She felt that someone was begging for life.
‘She may be hungry, my ‘Niti’. This name came out unexpectedly. Her name remained ‘Niti’.
What to do at home and how to do it? All four family members became worried. They started looking for ways to save it on social media. Purnima watched videos on YouTube. She found out at the time that there was no rehabilitation center for such injured and stray birds in Nepal.
‘Satu’ shocked in warm water was trial feed to Niti, planned to deliver slowly with the help of Straw. Hola! Niti cooperated and opened her mouth because of hunger. There was a movement in Niti’s throat. This made Purnima happy. In the early days, she began to feed single drops at half-an-hour intervals.
Milk and rice also was an option for Niti’s feed. Google Beda again, mentioned that milk should not be given to birds. She started giving only rice. Purnima also fed the insects found while examining the vegetables for the kitchen. The feeding interval began to increase to every two hours.
For the first few nights, Purnima slept with Niti to prevent her the bird from being bitten by insects and rats. Now Niti sits and sleeps on paper carton box with napkin paper as bedding. All family monitors and takes care of Niti time and again.
The bird that was found on the 4th of May opened its eyes on the 6th of May. The family found only love in the small eyes. On the day she opened her eyes, Purnima broke the news to everyone in the house.
First of all, she said to her mother, “Look Mamu Niti has opened her eyes, look how good she looks.” Asmita remembers what happened on the first day. At first glance, she had not imagined that the bird would reach this stage. She thanked her daughter.
Now the bird has begun to eat itself, and feathers have grown on its body. She also opens her mouth for food. When the feathers began to grow on her body, Purnima was sure that the bird is going to live now.
Purnima, who is studying agriculture at the undergraduate level of Natural Resource Management College of Agriculture and Forest Science University in Pokhara, was asked, “What do you do now?” Keep it to yourself? Now you know what to feed and how to feed. Her exact answer was, “We have an emotional connection with this bird, but we can’t always keep it at home. It will be a great success for us the day Nitti to returns to her natural habitat”.
She has also started self-study accordingly. Nowadays, days are spent trying to figure out a rewilding strategy for a sparrow. Time is passing smoothly during the lockdown. In this instinct, a sparrow that was almost dead also got life. The entire family of Gauriganj, Bharatpur, deserves thanks for this gift of life. May the sparrow that found life return to its natural habitat soon.
The original article is written by Raju Achrya published in Nepali language at pahilopost.com.