The Lone Seagull


While jogging on the beach last week I noticed a seagull standing alone,  further up on the beach than the other seagulls that were all eating big crabs left over from high tide at the water line.  As I ran past I realized that he was holding his foot up, just resting his toe on the sand.  A fishing line with a small metal weight was wrapped around his ankle.

“Shit.”  I crouched down near him and attempted to sneak close enough to grab him.  I slowly took off my jacket to throw over his head if I got close enough.  That’s how I grabbed a seagull with a torn wing once.  I hoped that maybe he couldn’t fly so I could grab him easier and get him to a rescue.  As I took two more little steps he flapped his wings and flew away.

“Dang it!”  I tried to follow him with my eyes but there were so many birds, I lost track of him. I continued running down the beach, keeping my eyes peeled for him.  I did not see him the entire length of the beach and had given up hope until I stopped at the base of the trail leading back up to the road and saw a lone seagull sitting quietly in the deep sand.  He stood up as I snuck closer revealing the fishing line on his ankle.

He side eyed me suspiciously.  “Hey Bub, let me help you.”  I treated him like a housecat.  I sat near him but totally ignored him hoping he’d let me get close enough to help.  Minutes passed.  I wished I had some crackers or pieces of crab.  Finally he’d had enough of me and flapped his wings and disappeared over the cliffs..

“Dang it!”  I ran back up to my truck to grab a big towel and some old stale crackers.  I ran back down to the beach to look for him.  I walked the beach with my crackers and my towel till it started to get dark but he was gone.

I worried about his leg hurting him.  The stress he must have felt being weighed down like that.  I fretted about his ability to swim with a weight on his ankle.  Would other seagulls begin to beat him up, sensing he was struggling?  There was nothing more to do but hope that a fisherman with a sharp knife or a bird lover would see him soon and be lucky enough to grab him.


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