That Quail, Robert
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The perennially bestselling and acclaimed classic of the little bird who preferred human companionship to other quail.
DEDICATION To Mildred and Tommy Kienzle, who provided the loving environment and understanding care which resulted in the development of a unique personality—Robert—and who generously permitted me to write this book CONTENTS DEDICATION Chapter 1 THE MIRACLE Chapter 2 REGISTRATION Chapter 3 A CHANGE OF SEASON Chapter 4 CHRISTMAS AND GRANDCHILDREN Chapter 5 IN THE SPRING—A SURPRISE Chapter 6 A BIG PROBLEM Chapter 7 FAIT ACCOMPLI Chapter 8 I
things would work out. However, I must admit that the “proceed as way opens” idea was not very convincing at that point. The situation brought to mind several things I had read. I recalled in particular a study by Dr. Konrad Lorenz, an eminent Austrian scientist, who reported a study of a male jackdaw. As I understand it, his theory involved a belief that a young bird taken into a human environment might adapt to such environment. The jackdaw of this case history attached itself to Dr. Lorenz
So-and-so, who would simply lose her heart—or So-and-so, who was so especially fond of quails, and so on. Of course I always said they might. And they did. One very charming group, six strong, made arrangements to come from a neighboring town, bringing two house guests with them. They announced that they believed they were relatives of Robert’s. I was accustomed to having people identify themselves with her by such remarks as, “I think she likes me,” so I took this in my stride. I politely asked
to keep her strength up. She could not manage her wild-bird seed because she was always selective, and ate only certain of the seeds. Mildred tried filling a tiny glass with the seeds, and getting her beak into it. But this meant that she came up with a mouthful, which is not the way a bird eats. She opened her mouth, trying to get rid of it, and that did not work. She had always had her wild rice from the palm of someone’s hand, and had often had it after she was in her bed and after the light
position. We have a photograph of him taken on the desk when the telephone was ringing. He knew it should be answered. He enjoyed the telephone and, hopping up onto the shoulder of the person talking, he would keep up a chatter himself. Given the chance, he chirruped and sang into the mouthpiece, responding to the voice coming from the other end. One day the telephone repairman came. He had read about Robert in the local paper, but still was far from prepared to find him examining each tool,