Farm Ireland

Monday 25 March 2019

Letter: How many people would give up the use of their tractor for weeks just to accommodate a ‘lady’?

Stock image.
Stock image.

Sir — I could not start my tractor on Monday last week, having previously used it some days before to shift some silage bales. Was the battery flat, was the starter stuck, had I a flat tyre?

The answer to all these questions was no, it was due to something entirely different.

The answer was that I was being held to ransom and partially blackmailed by a particular ‘lady’. Did I have a run-in with this ‘lady’, did I offend her in any way, was she in charge of a farm or other financial body that I owed money to, or a member of An Garda Siochana checking to see had I insurance or tax on said tractor?

The answer once again was no to all these questions.

In fact, I had supplied this ‘lady’ with a meal on several occasions, on her arriving at my doorstep and looking very hungry. In fact, she brought some of her cousins on occasions to be fed, and they were always given a meal as well. So why, then, was she stopping me from using my tractor to do my farm work?

Well Mrs Thrush, as I later found out to be the name of my ‘bird’, was in fact after doing something to the starter of my tractor — she was after setting up and building her home on top of said starter. She was, of course, of the feathered variety and had laid three eggs in the nest, and this is what led to my dilemma.

On ringing the local conservation society, I was informed that they usually get one similar incidence each year, and perhaps I could use the tractor as long as it was left back in the same place and position, but it would be better

if I could just leave it until Mrs Thrush had reared her family.

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So I have had to borrow another tractor to do my farm tasks, while Mrs Thrush sits comfortably on her eggs in her home on my tractor, until her brood has hatched out and left their temporary home — and probably called with her to my doorstep to be given a meal as well.

I have been told since that it is a lucky omen having her build her nest in such a manner and place, but I wonder how many people would do as I have done and given up the use of their tractor for so many weeks just to accommodate a ‘lady’?

Murt Hunt,

Ballyhaunis, Co Mayo

This Letter Appeared in the Sunday Independent on September 30, 2018.

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