Elizabeth Gao Portola High School / 11th Grade
The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Turkey, Syria on February 6, 2023, left the country in ruins. However, 13-year-old Berat Sari saved a pet budgie for 55 hours under the rubble. From this event, more people should be caring and protecting those more and as vulnerable as them.
People never know when or how they can save a life, and while sometimes the person saving someone else’s life is living a comfortable life, other times, it is the opposite. Being stuck outdoors without any protection, food, or water is devastating for not only humans but also birds, and, astonishingly, Berat saved someone who was struggling just like him. Even being close to hypothermia, Berat is willing to do anything for a little life.
Sari even called for help regardless of how difficult it must be to be in such a dire situation, yet his determination implies his intention for humanity and heart. By struggling together on close levels of needs, there is a mutual connection between Sari and the budgie. For example, from Sari’s side, he knows he is helping the budgie, is offering a crucial aspect of survival, and is increasing the budgie’s survival rate during the earthquake. On the other hand, the budgie feels protected and warmer than what would’ve been the case without Sari’s rescue despite the absence of water and food.
Although not everyone knows what temperature range budgies can thrive in, it is important to consider it after the fact that the budgie is safe. The budgie he saved is a pet bird; therefore, the optimal temperature for them is 70-75 F. Nevertheless, the temperature at night, arguably the coldest time of the day, is around 38 F in Turkey.
According to Pet Queries, “the minimum temperature they can tolerate is 40 degrees Fahrenheit. But this delicate petite-sized creature starts showing the discomfort signs when the temperature drops 60 degrees Fahrenheit”(Pet Queries). This indicates that while being stuck under the rubble is not the best option, it is, in theory, the better one when compared to being out in the open. Sari held the budgie under his hand for more than two days and didn’t give up.
When found, Sari’s aunt was in the ambulance with him along with the budgie, and she gave the bird the necessities it required to survive: warmth from her embrace, food, and water.
Through this event, there is still faith in humanity even in life-threatening situations, but by helping people and animals who are in danger, it is solely too late when one passes by and doesn’t return.
<Elizabeth Gao Portola High School / 11th Grade