The Slowcook at Spydog Farm The Slowcook at Spydog Farm

Bluebird Chimney Rescue

May 16th, 2013 · No Comments · Posted in farming

New house feature revealed: chimney trap

New house feature revealed: chimney trap

A couple of days ago we started hearing a previously unknown fluttering sound coming from inside the wood stove chimney. Since the previous owners took their wood stove with them (yet another project: find new wood stove) what we have is the butt end of a stove pipe sticking out of the wall from which you could hear the periodic fluttering quite clearly.

The cats thought this was endlessly fascinating. They would sit under the pipe end, just staring up at it.

Then this morning a plaintive chirping began. I looked inside the pipe with a flashlight and saw nothing but darkness. I figured the bird–whatever it was–was doomed. Nothing to be done for it. But at my wife’s urging (it’s going to SMELL!), I went down to the basement to fetch a screwdriver, thinking I’d try to remove the pipe where it enters the wall and perhaps find the bird there.

Once in the basement, however, the fluttering noises were even louder, up in the ceiling area beneath the stove. That’s when I noticed a steel stove pipe end with a handle on it poking out of the joists. Turns out we have a trap to the chimney I hadn’t known about.

Holding a five-gallon bucket under the trap, I removed the cap with the handle and out dropped a load of soot and one very dirty bluebird. The startled bird darted frantically around the basement, grabbed hold of a joist to catch its breath. I got the back door open and it flew to freedom without any further ado.

A mystery remains: What was the bluebird thinking when it flew into the chimney from the roof? And imagine its surprise once inside, trapped in utter darkness with nowhere to go.

Having emptied the bucket of soot in the compost pile, I’m now thinking what we need next is to clean out that chimney.

Oh, the joys of country living.

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