Norman’s Christmas Message 2014

Norman By The Tree
A Very Merry Christmas One and All from Yours Truly
Photograph: Ed @ Moggyblog
Dear Reader, In this First World War Centenary year I would like to draw attention to the animals that served alongside the brave men and women who gave us all our freedom today. I have it on good authority that a 16 million-strong army of animals including mules, donkeys, cats and even camels was deployed in our battle of the 1914 to 1918 conflict – with the lives of nine million of these fellow creatures tragically cut short. Here is my humble nod to these brave comrades! I salute you all! Wishing you all A Moggy Christmas and a Peaceful and Happy New Year 2015! Love and Purrs, Norman. x
Cat in the warm gun barrel
Ship’s cat tucked into one of the big guns aboard the H.M.S. Encounter 1916.
Photograph: neatorama.com
Cher Ami – The famous pigeon who saved 200 lives was awarded the Croix de Guerre medal
Photograph: https://www.racingpigeondigest.com
Probably the most famous of all the carrier/homing pigeons that were employed in both WW I and WW II (as vital communication links) was the one named ‘Cher Ami’, two French words meaning “Dear Friend”. Cher Ami spent several months on the front lines during the Fall of 1918. He flew 12 important missions to deliver messages. Perhaps the most important was the message he carried on October 4, 1918 when he survived shrapnel injuries to deliver a message that saved members of the “Lost Battalion”…. Read the full story at the Home of Heroes (homeofheroes.com)
Horse and Rider – taking a break. The horses had to endure the same hardships as the soldiers throughout the conflict!
Photograph: pinterest.com
Sgt. Stubby the dog
Sgt. Stubby was nearly killed by nerve gas in 1914
Photograph:
The now famous pitbull Seargent Stubby took part in seventeen battles and was nearly killed by nerve gas. He also captured a german spy. He is said to be the most decorated war dog of World War I and the only dog to be nominated for rank and then promoted to sergeant through combat. Another famous WW1 message carrying dog was ‘Rags’, a mixed breed terrier who was born in Paris. During his service he was bombed and gassed like the soldiers around him. He went on to save the life of many of his fellow soldiers. There are at least two war memorials to these brave animals. This one is in Hyde Park London
War Memorial
‘Animals in War’ Memorial in Hyde Park, London
Photograph: animalsinwar.org.uk
terrier This monument is a powerful and moving tribute to all the animals that served, suffered and died alongside the British, Commonwealth and Allied forces in the wars and conflicts of the 20th century. The memorial was unveiled by HRH The Princess Royal in November 2004, the 90th anniversary of the start of World War I.

Sparrow Hawk gets the bird

Cat Bird of the Month ~ November 2014
Sparrow Hawk Feeding
Video: Ed @ Moggyblog

This daring bird had the cheek to nestle down on Norman’s patch and proceed to tuck in to his elevenses. I dissuaded the said cat from going out to defend his turf on this occasion. Instead we watched from the safety of an open window.

The video is a bit gorey and not for the squeamish … He’s a lovely adult male bird though (looked him up on R.S.P.B website).

We are struck by the strength of his legs when he is pulling the prey apart and by the bright orange colouration on his chest.

Lion Cub

Cat of the Month ~ October 2014
lion cub photo by sperka
Lion Cub at Play

Photograph: Christian Sperka
Christian Sperka was born in Germany in 1962 is a professional photographer and photography teacher based in Nashville, Tennessee. Over the last 10 years, Christian has traveled the world ( living in Germany, Switzerland and the USA) photographing mainly animals in wild game preserves of South Africa, the jungles of Costa Rica, as well as zoos in Switzerland and across the United States. His work has been featured in wildlife magazines, books and promotional campaigns for Nashville Zoo, Cincinnati Zoo and Zurich Zoo in Switzerland. In June 2010, Christian opened his Animal Art Photography gallery at the Arcade in Nashville. Since January 2011 he is the Offical Nashville Zoo Photographer and Photography Teacher. Visit Christian Sperka’s Website to view photographs of animals of all kinds.

Poussie Poussie Baudruns

front cover illustration
Jennie (where a boy becomes a cat!) Book Cover
Photograph: Ed @ Moggyblog

Poussie Poussie Baudruns

Old Traditional Scottish Nursery rhyme

‘Poussie, poussie, baudrons, Whaur hae ye been?’ ‘I’ve been tae London, Tae see the Queen.’

‘Poussie, poussie, baudrons, Whit gat ye there?’ ‘I gat a guid fat mousikie, Rinnin’ up a stair!’

‘Poussie, poussie, baudrons, Whit did ye dae wi’ it?’ ‘I pit it in ma meal-poke, Tae eat tae ma breid.’

In this old Nursery rhyme it seems that the baudrons (or cat) has saved the mouse he has caught to make a sandwich later. The baudrons translates as “a cat” or even “an affectionate name for a cat”, or “a happy cat (re: the word mimics the purring sound of a cat)”. Reference: The Nursery rhyme is taken from the preface of the book ‘Jennie’ by Paul Gallico. The book was first published in the USA in 1950 as ‘The Abandoned’. The book is a fantasy story about a boy who loved cats so much that he would bring in the local strays and neighbourhood cats off the street to keep in his bedroom (mother is not pleased!). Without giving too much away the boy is himself turned into a cat. The book is a narrative of the cat’s adventures.