Zippity Doo Dah
Bluebirds are a cherished sight across North America. At one time Eastern Bluebirds were designated Rare by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Thanks to the efforts of bluebirders for constructing nest boxes, populations have increased and the species delisted. Zippity Doo Dah is a fledgling I once had the pleasure of assisting. Zippy's wings weren't fully developed when it came time to fledge. To add to his troubles, he was born with a crippled toe not conducive to balancing with underdeveloped wings. I had been providing the parents with mealworms during nesting so I now joined them in a co-parenting venture. Daily I would put Zippy out in an open-topped cage. His waiting parents would take the mealworms into the cage to feed him. After a week Zippy's wings strengthened enough for flight and balance. It was a blessing to see him join his parents and siblings in the sky. One more conservation success story!
This piece had the honor of being one of two pieces by Dodge chosen for Art of Conservation 2008 - An International Exhibit of Nature in Art, the Artists for Conservation's first annual juried art show and touring exhibit in support of conservation. 'Zippity Doo Dah' was on display at the Hiram Blauvelt Art Museum - one of the world's leading museums for nature and wildlife art September through to Dec 21st 2008.