Hoodies! A poem


Hoodies!

A poem by Ellinor and David Campbell

Photo: BirdLife Australia
Photo: BirdLife Australia

Hey, look at me, I’ve just been born with siblings two and three,

and life looks pretty good at Moggs, with miles of sand and sea.

But tragedy has struck us all, for we have lost our dad

while fighting off a savage fox, so we are very sad.

Now mum has said we must move on, to find a safer place…

my little legs get tired so fast, I can’t keep up the pace!

At last we’re there and we can hide beneath our mum’s warm breast.

We cuddle up, as warm as toast, until the next big test.

There’s people walking past our home right through each long, hot day,

and it’s our hope that all of them will keep quite far away,

especially the ones with dogs, for they run very fast,

so we must hide as best we can until the danger’s passed.

But strangely, there are other folk who put on yellow vests,

and watch us closely all the time…they’ve even made us nests!

However I now realise they’re here to lend a hand,

and keep our home secure and safe…they seem to understand.

They talk to people with their dogs and ask them to walk by

with dogs on leash, down near the sea, and try to tell them why.

That gives us time to eat our fill, for we need lots of food,

and so it’s great when passers-by respect our little brood.

We simply need to have some space, and want them to take care,

so we may have a chance to fly, to make our way out there.

Some other things that frighten us are gulls and bikes and balls,

and fun runs which can make our beach a bit like shopping malls!

We’re growing bigger with each day and so we need to roam

along the beach to find some food that’s far away from home.

Our wardens don’t know where we are, and they get quite upset

while searching for us here and there, but we play hard to get!

And sometimes other hoodies come and try to interfere,

but our brave mum soon scares them off…she won’t let strangers near!

We’re getting big, our feathers grow, we stretch our wings and run,

for life is looking pretty good, with sand and surf and sun.

But nights are scary and that fox is not too far away…

that’s how my brother lost his life, and so we dare not stray.

It prowled around the next night too, but mum is very smart…

she made us hide away from her, and kept us well apart.

It worked so well the fox was fooled, our guardians were too…

they hunted high and low for us, and didn’t have a clue

that we were safe, but when they knew there was so much relief

that we were very much alive and hadn’t come to grief.

Each day we need to feed so much, and run along the beach,

while mum still watches over us…she’s had so much to teach!

But often she will leave us now, although the wardens stay

to watch us run and flap our wings…we’d love to be away!

And now, at last, it’s time to go, for both of us can fly

above the people, sand, and dogs, we’re taking to the sky.

We’re off to roam both near and far, way over land and sea,

so thank you, thank you, one and all…you’ve helped us to be free!

It is important that all beachgoers keep their distance from hoodie breeding zones and ‘give them space’.

Not sure where the hoodies breed? Click here to find out.

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