Bird-Brain Neighbours

I have great sympathy for my neighbour. Their family is in turmoil because one of them has been re-hospitalised due to a psychotic episode, an ongoing problem that they’ve faced several times in the past few years. I help out with the children as best I can without being a nosy-parker neighbour (driving kids to school, picking up odds and ends at the supermarket for them when asked, etc.). But this problem with their rubbish has been going on for years, and I can’t tell you how much it annoys me. On the evening before bin day, they put their bags at the verge, which attracts foxes and cats and mice (and rats probably) to scavange through it all night long. Come morning, the bags are pecked open and then the seagulls and magpies come it to finish off the bag’s contents and spread revolting, mucky stuff all across my lawn. The birds pick up chicken bones, fly off and then drop them in my garden where Molly finds them. Sometimes it’s a real tussle to get the bones out of her mouth. Chicken bones are deadly for dogs. I’ve mentioned this problem to the neighbours, asked that they leave their bags in the bins so the animals and birds can’t get at them, but all my requests fall on deaf ears … and they aren’t even deaf.

I just thought I’d unload this irksome problem in the hope that I’d feel better and be more tolerate. It is afterall Christmas….

10 Comments Add yours

  1. ceciliag says:

    Oh dear, that IS a problem .. it is a shame they cannot put their bags out in the Morning,or maybe you could buy them a bin for christmas, well no, that will not go down well.. Though those naughty birds have beautiful markings. Poor you. ARE you feeling better? c

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      I do feel better, actually. At least I know no, based on your comment, that I’m not being a persnickety, grumpy old goat. 😀

  2. dianadomino says:

    No you are not persnickety, grumpy or a goat of any age. ^_^ I would be aggravated, too, and would be tempted to put the bags in the bins as soon as I saw them on the street. The consequence of their thoughtlessness is a personal one for you, so perhaps it would be warranted to do so. Eventually, one would hope they would see you struggling with their bags and realise it’s just as easy to put them in the bins themselves.

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      I wish it was that easy, Diana. We’ve been neighbours for 18-years, and I suspect I should have taken appropriate steps years ago rather than trying to be civilised and tolerant. I have spoken with them about it, I have even picked up their debris from my garden and returned it to them in a tidy little carrier bag, I have done everything but stomp my foot and scream. Maybe I’ll just start picking it up and throwing it back in their garden…. in the middle of night … when they can’t see me. 😉

  3. Misk, I’m not sure I understand. Over here, we have big plastic bins that we put out on Thursday night for emptying first thing on Friday morning. Do they not have a bin, or is the practice to leave bags out? It can’t be just you who’s annoyed – perhaps an anonymous call to the council and they might intervene?

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      It’s the property owner’s responsibility to buy their own rubbish bins. I’ve never seen them set one out at the verge in all the years we’ve lived here. I suspect that they have a black plastic binliner bag in the garage, and just fill it up with smaller bags of rubbish during the week. A lot of people set their bags out on collection days because the wind can send the empty bins rolling down the street to be hit by cars. Quite often collection day turns our village into a tip. The binmen used to go on to the property to empty bins. Now we have to take them to the verge, and that’s when all the problems started. With all the local council services cuts and budget problems, we’re lucky to have a rubbish collection I reckon.

  4. This is such a nasty problem. I don’t know how you could handle it… however, I did spent a summer shooting plastic pellets (shhh) in the direction of our magpies and they don’t come round our yard too often any more. (Wouldn’t/didn’t hurt them, for all your bird lovers out there) The noise just scared them away. Having said that… you’d have to be careful not to shoot your neighbor in the process..

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      The neighbours would probably ring the police if I started taking pop shots at wildlife from behind my drapes. LOL! Not that I’m not tempted but I think I’d be begging for trouble. I think this is a problem without an easy solution.

  5. Joanna says:

    It sounds like you are torn between your sympathy for your neighbours’ needs and frustrated by the lack of empathy for your feelings in return which is always an uncomfortable place to be. Have you found out how much a bin would cost? It might be worth getting them one, cheaper than vet bills if the dog is made ill by the bones. Our Council supplies all our bins free of charge currently but we are in a big city with a major commitment to recycling, refuse sorting and so on. It seems a shame that services are so varied from Council to Council but that is the way it is going increasingly as our Councils desperately try to balance their frozen budgets and figure out what services they can cut.

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      Yes, this is exactly what’s twirling about in my head. I’m torn between my sympathies for this family and their rubbish which seems an immaterial nuisance by comparison.

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