Empathy For Fellow Lifeforms

I’m going to share some odds and ends of my thoughts in the last few weeks. You see, I’ve been rescuing all many of small creatures inside my apartment, some of which most people wouldn’t hesitate to kill. I’ve been rescuing living things since my younger days, so this is hardly new for me, but being older gives me more insight into why I do it.

Not a wolf spider, but good pic anyway.

I had a small spider appear in my bathroom sink, and it couldn’t climb the slick surface to get out. I couldn’t help but think what a treacherous journey the crawl up the drainpipes must’ve been for the little thing. In terms of size, this would be trekking miles for a spider. Nevermind that having eight legs probably speeds up travel time, it’s likely still a rough patch to get through.

So, I maneuvered the spider onto some tissue paper, and placed it outside in a dark area. I believe it was a small wolf spider, and they’re harmless in terms of venom.

I’ve also managed to whisk away little house millipedes more times I can count. There seem to be an abundance of them in this area. They also like bathrooms.

Then there are the turtles. There are two large ponds in the complex, and many types of aquatic turtles live in there. I love going out there to see them. Occasionally, I will cut up a small amount of some veggies and fruits to feed them. They love bread, but it’s not good for their health, nor is it for the ducks either.

Some residents of the local pond. I think at this point they recognize me as an odd but convenient food-bringer.

I came upon a very small mud turtle making its way toward the pond in a parking lot. At the same time, a bunch of rowdy kids were coming down the stairwell nearby. I quickly picked up the turtle and placed on the bank of the pond so he could get away in time.

Some of the larger turtles are bold enough to walk up to you and beg like very slow puppies.

I’ve also come across much larger turtles walking in the street, and at risk of possibly being on the receiving end of a severe bite, I’ve still managed to get them to a water source. I just can’t stand the thought of one of them being run over for simply trying to get from place to place. It’s hardly their fault they are stuck living among human sprawl.

These are the two stragglers left. I’m hoping they beat the odds.

Then, in the last few days, I noticed three little ducklings alone without a mother. I learned from a neighbor that the mother went missing, probably killed by something, and these ducklings had been alone for the past few days. None of the others female ducks have taken them in, and they only have little bushes on the bank of the pond to hide from predators.

Ducklings are painfully cute, which makes leaving them to the wild hurt like hell. Just the other day, there were only two of them left. I can’t imagine how hard it must be for them, and the odds are stacked against them. I hope they manage to survive. If not, I can only hope that whatever takes them is quick.

I clearly have more empathy than I know what to do with. I like to think of that as a good thing, even though it can be a pain in the ass.

I should have an update on my writing projects and such in the next post or two. Thanks for reading.



5 thoughts on “Empathy For Fellow Lifeforms

  1. You know, I think the turtles move about when they need to lay their eggs. So you saved not just one turtle, but many. Keep up the great work!

    (I agree that we should have more empathy for these creatures. We don’t give a second thought about killing them in hordes, why not extend a little care for the few left behind?)

    1. I have seen a couple turtle hatchlings recently, but I think the adults don’t seem to mind crawling up on the banks regardless of egglaying cycles. They just love food handouts. 🙂

      I tried to give some oatmeal and bird feeding formula to the two ducklings the other day. Unfortunately, the larger ducks and a horde of turtles decided they wanted their share. The ducklings did get some, but they have a hard time getting to the food without being scared away by the bigger ducks and the turtles. I was trying to follow the ducklings and toss food to them, but everyone else saw fit to follow. At least I tried. I still check on them day to day. I probably go by the pond again today, just to get some feed out there for them.

      1. Thank you. 🙂 Unfortunately, I live in an apartment, and ducks eventually need a pen, and one that is predator resistant. They are good pets, however from what I’ve read they do take a lot of work. To add to that, I have a black lab that might want to attack them. I also have a pet bird already, a parrot, and caring for birds can be very costly.

        As much as I’d want to help, the circumstances aren’t right, and nature must take its course. It’s a brutal system for all who live in it.

        Today, I saw only one chick left. I feel terrible for it.

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