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Sparrow family finds home in Yellowknife Canadian Tire

After a Canadian Tire garden centre employee discovered four sparrow eggs in nest in a a hanging plant for sale, management didn't know what to do. A wildlife expert told them to keep the nest where it was, in a safe environment. Now, the sparrow family has found a home in the plant, becoming a popular draw.

Family with 4 chicks has taken up residence in hanging plant and become a hit with employees, customers

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      A burgeoning sparrow family has found a home in Yellowknife in one of the unlikeliest of locations: Canadian Tire's garden centre.

      A Canadian Tire employee recently noticed a sparrow hanging around a potted plant, hung up at the outdoor gardening section of the store. When he took the plant down, he found a nest with four eggs inside.

      Office manager Sky McKiel says that was when the store brought in a wildlife expert. Instead of suggesting the nest be moved out of the high-traffic area, he suggested it be kept where it was, because it's a safe environment. 

      For a while, the nest stayed in the plant without fanfare. However, earlier this week, the family began to grow.

      "It was Monday that we pulled it down to make sure that all four eggs were still there," says McKiel, "and we noticed the one had just started to hatch. So we monitored it Monday and Tuesday, and, obviously, today all four of them have hatched.

      "We try not to bother her too much," says McKiel of the mother sparrow. "We can see her coming in and out of the nest, so we knew everything was good."

      The group has now become a permanent summer installation at the Garden Centre. McKiel says that when employees water the plant, they only water the side without the nest. The birds have proven a hit with customers, as well, who often ask to come take a look.

      And if some enterprising resident asks to buy the sparrow family's new home? The plant, says McKiel, is no longer for sale.

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