Friday, July 23, 2010

Some Bird Brained Guests

It's quiet in the house and I'm not up to finishing all the cooking yet. I head to the computer to check emails and to take care of some odds and ends of business. Frankly, I'm bored and the view outside the sliding doors is of foot after foot of grass and no living creatures. I've been saving a large bag of some odds and ends of challah and rolls and cereals and assorted goodies. I go outside, spreading the wealth across the lawn and planting beds. I head back inside and wait to see what will develop.

Boredom banished as the yard comes to life. Chickadees and starlings arrive first, yapping loudly to spread the word that the K yard is where it's happening now. A small bevy of quail also drop in. In one corner a group of robins is eating with gusto. A squirrel comes down the hill to see what all the fuss is about. He snags a piece of roll and sits and munches while he observes.

Some of the pieces I put out are larger than others and I watch as the chickadees play grab and snatch with those pieces. They head for the patio to duke it out over who has territorial rights to those larger pieces. One piece of bread has been grabbed and then grabbed again by 7 different chickadees. A whole yard's worth of goodies to enjoy and they are getting territorial over one relatively small piece.

On one of the fences I count 17 starlings who have grabbed their snacks and are sitting high up to enjoy them out of the traffic jam the lawn is becoming. Our chipmunks have ventured out to see what all the noise is about. One of the chickadees left a largish piece on the patio where the chipmunks are watching and they grab it and head for their home to eat in comfort at their own "table."

The bluejays are being uncommonly reserved. They sit on the edge of a planter wall and watch their cousins at work. It's almost as if they won't deign to eat what a mere chickadee will eat. I know from experience that that attitude won't last. In the end, wanting that treat will win out over artificial ideas of whom you will socialize with during a meal and whom you won't socialize with.

We also have a visitor who arrived last week from way out of town--its colors are a vibrant green and yellow. This has to be a pet of some type that escaped its cage and is now living free. So far it's doing fine mingling with its cousins, but I worry about what will happen when the summer ends and colder weather arrives.

Amazingly a mother and young baby bird, about the size of a large egg, land right near the doors. I watch as the mother fusses around that chick, dashing around to gather bits of bread and bringing them back to feed the youngster with. As the chick turns and attempts to walk out onto the lawn, the mother grabs at its tail and pulls it back. Only when she is side by side with it do they proceed to the grass. Doesn't seem to matter whether human or otherwise--a mother is a mother.

Sure, the lawn is a treasure trove of worms and bugs, and I didn't need to feed my backyard neighbors for fear they would go hungry. But everyone, wildlife included, sometimes likes something different, likes a snack of a different flavor. As for me, there's a smile on my face and my boredom is gone. There is simply nothing like a hearty dose of nature to banish the blahs and to put everything into perspective.


Anonymous said...

what a lovely image! thank you!
I had a lot of leftover crumbs and pieces of challah and rolls too. I made stuffing. I think you had the right idea :-)

BE said...

You may want to leave NY old friend but getting you away from that piece of green you love? Not so sure it's going to happen so easily. If I had the view you have out back I might never leave the house, never mind the state.