April 19, 2019
As we were getting settled in after anchoring at Montego Bay, Jamaica, Kris heard a splashing in the water next to us.
Unexpectedly, we found a bird thrashing about, obviously in distress and struggling to stay afloat right next to our boat. Drifting helplessly in the current, it was desperately trying to get ahold of anything it could.
Kris grabbed a plastic bucket while I hopped in the the dinghy, which was tied to the transom, and carefully fished the bird out of the water as it floated by.
The fact that the poor little guy didn’t offer the slightest bit of resistance to being held was more than enough proof that it was not in a very good way. And, though the bedraggled bird appeared to be thoroughly exhausted and in shock, we couldn’t see any obvious injuries.
Carefully, we set him down in the bucket in a little swaddle of towels and offered some fresh water. But, aside from an occasional twitch of the head or a shiver of its body, our new friend seemed content to simply sit on the dry towel, obviously much preferring his current location over the one he occupied only moments earlier.
Each time we checked during the remainder of the day, the bird’s status remained largely unchanged. Aside from shifting around a couple of times and even standing up for a while, it mostly just sat quietly, resting or sleeping on the towel in the bucket.
Our hope was that after the chance to dry off and a good night’s rest, he might recover fully and be happily on its way.
Unfortunately, Mother Nature had other intentions. When Kris checked in the morning, it became evident that the poor little guy had passed away during the night.
Kris placed him gently in the water, which was now smooth as glass, and ever so slowly our little friend floated quietly away.
Though we certainly wish we could have done more to help, there was at least solace in the knowledge that we had hopefully provided a comfortable and dry resting place for our friend’s final night.