Friday, 12 March 2010

Stunned Pigeon

This sorry little saga has already been played out on the Birdforum message boards and will be related word for word, so apologies to this of you who saw it there already, but it's the most interesting bird-related thing to happen to me for about a week.

Post 1:

Had a young Wood pigeon fly into next door's upstairs window this morning. I took a look over the fence and it was sat on the ground. Within 10/15 minutes it had gathered its wings and seemed to be sitting quite happily recovering its senses.

I've been keeping half an eye on it and a couple of hours later it's still there. Although it seems to have shuffled into a corner it's shown no sign of moving any significant distance.

Picture should be attached. Looks like its stripped away some of the feathers round the base of the bill (at least, I presume it's the crash that caused this) but I can't see any other signs of injury.

No one's currently in next door but thet have youngish kids who'll be getting back around 4. We get on well so me climbing over the fence to fetch the thing won't cause too much excitement, but I don't want to go handle it unnecessarily.

Any thoughts? My usual policy would be to let it lie until its well enough to move, but its wedged itself right in under the back door where if it doesn't get brained by the door opening, someone's quite likely to tread on it by mistake.

If anyone wants to tell me my ID skills are rubbish and it's actually a young Stock Dove they are most welcome to do so, as that would be a garden tick.

Post 2:

Ah well, after about 3/4 hours of pigeon inactivity I ended up hopping the fence and trying to get a closer look. It didn't like me coming near it and ran away, limping and slightly trailing a wing. I feared the worst and tried to get a box over it but it didn't like that either, so I ended up chasing it round the corner of next door's garden for 5 minutes. It tried to take flight a couple of times during the chase and managed it on the third attempt - by the time it was up it seemed to be flying strongly.

It's either exercised out whatever was wrong, or come down in one of the cat-infested gardens over the back. Given that it was sat there for 3 hours I'm not too hopeful, but there was no way it was getting in that box.

Still, at least I got some exercise. Climbing that fence is about the most athletic thing I've done in years...

I've no doubt it's a fox's dinner by now, but I did what I could.

In other, non-bird, news, it is probably best when playing Dwarf Fortress to build your flood defences BEFORE curiously chanelling out a path from the raging whitewater river to the nearest hillside to see if you can flood the whole lower portion of the map. I now have a horrible feeling you can.

Where A is the breach in the river, B is the entrance to the Dwarf mine and C is the slowly progressing flood defence. This could be bad.

Will they finish the wall in time? Will my Dwarves be consigned to a watery mass grave? Will anyone apart from Parus even know what the hell I'm talking about, much less care? Not likely.


  1. You have no problem there. Still, you may as well assign all your dorfs the masonry skill until the wall is finished. The channel from the river is too narrow to let enough water through quick enough to reach your wall in time. Mass map flooding takes aaaaaages. Not that I reckon you'll get that far - flowing water uses about a million times more CPU than static 7/7. Water flows off the side of the map so flooding half the map generally renders the fort unplayable within a year. I found the best way to dick around with flooding is to embark in a deep valley, dam the ends and then pump water into it.

    If you drop invaders into it, remember to build in some sort of loot-retrieval system. (Water only pushes items when it's less than 7/7 deep; engine issues).

    Oh god. This game.


    Also, the pigeon is dead.

  2. Actually the flowing started to peter out fairly soon after I took that screenshot so I set my miner to widening all the channels to see if I could increase the flow a bit. He was duly set on and drowned by a carp, taking with him my only pickaxe and all my half decent masonry skills.

    Abandon fortress start again.

  3. ... and why was your only decent mason also your only miner? They're both jobs you're going to want working 100% of the time, they don't mix.

  4. Oh, and maybe avoiding maps with carp is a good idea for now :P