Posted by: atowhee | March 15, 2013


The House Sparrow is often missed, dissed, hissed or simply disregarded politely, even on the day of the annual Christmas Bird Count. They get counted, silently, without remark. I see them often but I rarely stoop to take a single piture of one. Today, I stooped.hosp-feml

P1520268 (1280x960) These doughty, redoubtable, hardy birds have been flung across the globe from their original range in northern Eurasia. Though they’ve had a hard time coping with modern life in their native England. Turns they don’t do much better with pesticides and herbicides than most critters. The House Sparrow does thrive across much of Europe. A large population can be found among the tourists in front of Notre Dame Cathedral. They abound in ther city of Lisbon and elswehere, including much of Oregon where there are towns or farms. You’re not likely to find them in unlogged forest or high sagebrush steppe.

Their adaptablity, their hardiness, their fertility stand them in good stead. I can foresee a future earth populated largely by dandelions, cockroaches, star thistle and atop the food pyramid the House Sparrow eating the lower orders. These sparrows are better positioned than we humans to survive the impending calamaties being fostered by our techonological-economic rush to drain every last profitable particle from this planet and sell it, burn it, or eat it. As we over-eat, overheat and over-consume, the sparrow adapts. They’ll move to places where rain still falls, where some insects still reproduce. When we Americans have finally put enough stuff into self-storage to furnish two other plants the size of earth, the little sparrow will still be making small nests, using crevices and collapsing human structures, feeding on what’s available without resort to preservatives, cold storage, mass production or plastic wrap. It is a prescription for survival. I salute you, Mr. and Mrs. Domesticus.

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