I submit the following:
Each of the past 2 summers that we've been here in rural Wisconsin, we've been neighbors to several migratory families. They are good and interesting neighbors, provide much entertainment as you peer at them, unobtrusively through the windows, sometimes reaching for binoculars. You get to know them by sight, and soon, you watch their kids grow. Come winter, they leave, because only fools hang around in Wisconsin for the winter.
In the barn, of course, are the barn swallows, who treat Charles as a god, following him on the mower as he exposes hidden bug-manna. I have no doubt that they have our (or at least his) back, should those thug deer try something more than just stamping and huffing at us. There are eastern bluebirds in the bird house to the West. We got to watch a minor turf war between them and another family this spring, but the current residents proved the tougher and seem very cool. There's a family of American goldfinch who think the seeds from my columbine are quite the haute cuisine, the parents, their 1 son and 4 daughters all jimmying the seeds from the pods yesterday morning. The cardinal who lives in the lane, who flies in front of the car windshield at least half the times you drive down the street. Throw in the woodpeckers, hawks (reason #52 why our kitty is NEVER, EVER going outside), hummingbirds, your usual robins and crows and starlings, the loud, lewd wild turkeys and pheasants, and all and it's quite the busy place.
Then you have the house finches. Each year, we've had house finches nest above our porch light. I'm terribly fond of them. They raise 2 broods and are nice, if neurotic, neighbors. They really don't like us using the front door during the spring and summer. We try to accommodate them, within reason.
This year, though, I think the parents are either teens, or completely dumb, incredibly unlucky, abusive or really, really need to take a course or 5 from Home Depot in how to build a structurally stable structure. One in which you can safely raise your offspring.
The first brood, about 2 months ago, were, one by one, somehow ejected from the nest, then the next day, the nest fell. I assumed some other bird was responsible and felt very sad. A month later, the whole nest fell, again, with all eggs lost. About two weeks ago, they rebuilt, and a week ago, I found another egg that had fallen to it's end. (picture below) Currently, the nest is still in place, although somewhat precariously so. They seemed to have abandoned it, but I saw them back today, along the roofline at the front, which is their usual pattern when having another go at it.
Do you think that any infertile birds out there are bothered by this? Or maybe they are just on crack. I've named them Brittany and Kevin. Do you think it's time to call Child Protective Services or am I just too judgmental? Maybe if I offer to take an egg for a night or two each week to give them a spell and a chance to go to some counseling or take some parenting classes? Yes. That sounds right. I'll speak with them tomorrow, unless they're hung over. Unless that makes me an enabler? So difficult to know.
Labels: The Life Rural