Monday, April 20, 2009


My eastern neighbor's front door is recessed into the front of his house, so as you stand there knocking, there is a wall on either side of you, each with a high octagonal window. While I was standing on said porch the other day, I noticed a lot of organic detritus under my feet. When he answered the door, I pointed out a huge nest on one of the window ledges.

There's one there, too, he said, pointing to the other window.

What kind of birds?

I dunno.

Just then, something swooped right at my head. I ducked so fast, I nearly fell off the porch.

That kind of bird, he said. Sitting in a nearby tree was a robin, beak full of dried grass and looking put out.

I guess I need to get rid of those nests, he sighed.

Well, I wouldn't, I allowed, but then that's just me.

But people can't come to the door with them protecting their nests.

Sometimes that's a good thing, I pointed out.

Meanwhile, the nest building is progressing in my yard as well. This is a grackle nest in the privat.

I took down the bluebird house that the sparrows were highly interested in, but to my surprise, they had not yet built a nest in it. I'll put it back up in May.

A year or so ago, when my neighbor to the north of me put up a bird bath and feeder, she commented about not wanting to attract the "wrong kind" of bird. I didn't ask her what she meant, but now I am wondering if she was talking about grackles and starlings.

They and the sparrows are my most frequent visitors now. I don't like to feed the birds during the summer - that's why I have a backyard habitat populated with food plants - but I also don't like holding birdseed until fall, so I am letting them finish off the sunflower seeds and peanuts.

Saturday would have been a good day to plant snap peas. I thought I had ordered some online, but apparently not. There was half a bag in the refrigerator, though, left over from two years ago. Wondering whether they were still viable, I soaked ten pea seeds.

Huh. Still good, mostly. Now if it would stop raining, I could put these in the ground.

P.S. There's a survey on honesty over here on one of my other blogs, in case you are interested.

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