As you probably know, yesterday, Governor Mills announced a mandatory closure of non-essential businesses in the state of Maine. One of the exemptions include “animal feed and supply stores,” which means we will be able to continue to safely serve you and your birds.
We firmly believe in the mental health benefits of maintaining our connection with the nature world, especially birds, in this time of stress and uncertainty. There is nothing better to do right now for your health and safety than enjoying watching the beauty of birds at our feeders and in our yards. Have you noticed how beautiful a cardinal looks against the snow, or really savored the intensely vivid colors of a Blue Jay? Watch how the light plays with a pallet of colors as a Common Grackle moves - this is not just a black bird! Check for newly arrived migrant sparrows under your feeders, and step into the backyard to hear the growing chorus of spring birdsong. And do you have a “Yard List” of all of the birds seen and heard from your yard? If not, now is a perfect time to start one!
As for the birds, we know that although birds simply are not dependent on feeders, the supplemental food offered at feeding stations is important to them. Studies have shown that access to feeders in the winter increase breeding productivity in the spring and summer, for example. And now many natural food supplies are in shorter supply after being consumed all winter. Especially after we get an unexpected heavy snowfall!
However, despite our wholehearted beliefs in the above two benefits, we are not willing to put you, ourselves, and all of our loved ones at risk. There is so little we know and understand about this novel virus, so we are firmly behind the “better safe than sorry” mentality right now. It’s really the only choice.
Therefore, as of 6:00pm today, Wednesday, March 25th, we are going to - out of an abundance of caution - close our door to regular traffic for the time being. We are strongly encouraging ONLY curbside pickup, free delivery to surrounding towns (see previous posts about these two options), and online ordering. However, if you absolutely need to come in to figure out what you need, we will allow one party at a time into the store ONLY between 10:00am and 4:00pm each day.
We will continue to expand our eStore offerings, and we are likely to expand our delivery service soon to include towns currently outside our delivery range. Stay tuned for that. And yes, we do still have mealworms and cracked corn for your backyard chickens and ducks as well!
And speaking of essential items, we are fully stocked with Birds & Beans bird friendly-certified coffee. We certainly can’t make it through one of these days of late without ample caffeination!
This is a serious situation, but we’ll do whatever we can to remain open for you and your birds, as long as we are all safe in the process.
We are immensely grateful for your continued support. We know you love your birds as much as we do, and so we want to do what is best for you, too. Thank you for shopping small, and we promise we’ll be passing on as much of our income to fellow local small business as we all work to keep our economy alive and keep life the way it should be!
Stay healthy everyone!
Derek and Jeannette.