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Another troubling Facebook post !!! I need to stop looking...

August 7 2017 at 12:03 PM

Ron  (Login RonDEZone7a)
Hummingbirder 2008

If any of you are on Hummingbirds Anonymous (Facebook), you may have seen a bizarre post someone made this morning (and was removed 15 minutes later by the admins). Some man in southern Maryland posted pics and a video of his 3 and 4 year old kids picking up and petting live hummingbirds. He claimed they just allowed his kids to pick them up and handle them - claiming that the hummers were "friendly" and they "would not do it, unless they wanted to be picked up". But his video revealed these hummers were trapped on his screened porch and were running out of energy and his kids were picking them up, as they fell to the floor (probably he had a feeder next to a hole in the porch's screening).

Of course, several posters immediately started asking him to release the birds and that they were probably starving food, and he shouldn't let the kids play with them. After he persisted that the hummers were "tame" and wanted to be handled, others pointed out that it was illegal to trap and handle them. He then got nasty and said "well, ARREST me then!"... finally the post was deleted by the Admins.

His own Facebook page revealed that these adorable kids were part of the kiddie pageant culture.. if that has any connection with thinking what they were doing was "cute" and justifiable? He also mentioned that "hummingbirds are thought to be the souls of departed family members"...

Uuuuuuugh... more sick-o's out there, abusing our hummingbirds! VERY disturbing!
Wilmington, Delaware
USDA zone 7a
Heat zone 6
Sunset zone 32
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Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Another troubling Facebook post !!! I need to stop looking...

August 7 2017, 1:49 PM 

Ron,

That is a horrifying, disgusting, and very sad story, but I'm not going to touch this with a ten foot pole. The ignorance of some people is astounding, especially when kids are involved!!
Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

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Joni
(Login Yodlei44)
Hummingbirder 2008

Re: Another troubling Facebook post !!! I need to stop looking...

August 8 2017, 10:28 AM 

I feel anxious just reading about it. Maybe if they used their real names, authorities can arrest them. They probably are still doing it.

Joni
Elwood, IL
Zone 5b
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Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Another troubling Facebook post !!! I need to stop looking...

August 8 2017, 12:55 PM 

I agree Joni, but we'd have to get many photos, videos and factual evidence which might be impossible to obtain. It is awful that this man is training his kids to think about hummingbirds in this way.
Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

[linked image]

 
 

Nathan
(Login nmotz06)
Hummingbird lover 2013

Re: Another troubling Facebook post !!! I need to stop looking...

August 8 2017, 2:52 PM 

When I was about 12 I was camping in Colorado with my family and we had a juvenile Rufous fly into a large window at our cabin. I was young and decided to keep him. A few days later I noticed he was very weak and barely able to fly. I tried to release him and he was just strong enough to fly to some Penstemons growing wild near the cabin. Nearly broke my heart watching him struggle to get a few drops of nectar from those flowers. I discovered that I had somehow mixed his sugar water incorrectly. Also, he wasn't able to capture insects since he was indoors. He was too weak to leave so I recaptured him, fed him properly and released him that evening. To my knowledge he survived the painful ordeal I put him through.

Over the years I've had many more injured hummingbirds turn up in my yard. I offer them a sip of sugar water and let them go. Only once did I keep one overnight because it had been attacked by an unknown predator. He recovered his strength and was able to fly the next day.

Bottom line is that I will make every attempt to return a hummingbird to the wild as soon as possible. They can be very comfortable around humans but should not be held captive. I learned my lesson and hope that others will do the same.
Nathan Motz
Deridder, Louisiana

 
 

Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Another troubling Facebook post !!! I need to stop looking...

August 9 2017, 1:36 AM 

It is certainly difficult and unrealistic to expect a child to understand the nutritional requirements of a hummingbird and that they are not playthings and house pets. That is why this particular post is so upsetting and problematic---this father is teaching his own children to abuse these beautiful birds and they don't know the difference.

Nathan, I'm so sorry that you had to go through that experience with the Rufous, but now you know better.
Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

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