The Common Mynas and the Rat by Maretha Botha– Part 2
Later that day, the Vervet monkeys are still upset. They keep chattering about the bad rat and his new friends, the Mynas. How could such a thing happen in their forest? Why would these foreign birds kick other birds’ eggs out of their nest and lay their own eggs there instead? They chatter so much that they almost fall out of the tree when Wisdom, the spotted-eagle owl, suddenly and silently, lands next to them.
‘You monkeys are always chattering about other bush creatures’ business, but today, I overheard your chats about the crimson-breasted shrikes’ eggs. The only way to stop those Mynas is to make things unpleasant for them.’
‘I can do unpleasant,’ one of the older monkeys in the troops gibbers, ‘because my family always accuses me of grabbing all the best fruits – which is unpleasant – they accused me more than once.’ He pushes his chest forward, quite proud of his success.
‘Your fellow troop members are right. That is very unpleasant. That is why I stick to the undergrowth and rather slurp ants. That way, no one gets upset,’ a pangolin shouts, while slowly moving along the undergrowth, expertly using his long tongue to devour more termites from a dead branch.
‘Hmmm . . . Not if you’re an ant being slurped up,’ one of the smaller monkeys gibbers, but he quickly hides his face behind his mother’s back when Wisdom gives him a cold stare. Suddenly, no one has anything more to chatter or do. Instead, they all stare at Wisdom, who wants to hoot something important.
‘None of you is making sense. We must do something which will make those Mynas want to leave and not come back. So, can all you chittering chattering animals and birds ponder a plan?’ Wisdom asks and then continues, ‘Meanwhile, we should all chant our forest motto. I’m sure it’ll help us to think better.’
‘I want to start first,’ a gruff voice croaks. ‘After all, the good grandparents like to listen to me at night when they’re sitting on their porch drinking strong black coffee and lately, I see them turning their porch lights off, watching the fireflies.’
And without further ado, Fee-Far-Fun, a large bull frog, begins to croak his song:
‘Whatever the situation, it has my consideration.
‘I’ll consider the weak amongst us, and never make a fuss.’
Child Monkey again finds his courage and gibbers once more. ‘That’s not our forest motto – just your own frog song. I’ll chant our motto instead.
‘“Whatever the weather, we have recourse.
‘Friends stick together and finish the course!”’
‘That is perfect, Child Monkey! You helped me ponder plan. For as long as it takes, I’m going to perch in the same tree those pesky Mynas use. It won’t be long and they will move away,’ Wisdom grunt-hoots, warning everyone at the same time with a final hoot, ‘And while I’m away, I don’t want any monkey business from any of you chattering monkeys.’
‘We’ll try, Wisdom,’ the monkeys agree, dropping their shoulders, just before Wisdom lifts his mighty wings and flies straight to the large pine tree where the Mynas perch at night. ‘Someone is going to have a big fright tonight. I know Wisdom’s right and those Mynas will take flight!’ Child Monkey gibbers a line before hiding behind his mother’s back again, happily whooping and screeching.
About Maretha Botha
African Adventure Books:
Book 1 – Flame and Hope: An African Adventure
Book 2 – Friends: An African Adventure
Meet Maretha Online: