2012-09-23 - 8:16 a.m.
Is it the change in the bird porch, or is it a change in the weather? Both pairs of peachfronted conures have been very frisky lately. I've watched lots of mating dances, and on Thursday afternoon I accidentally stumbled outside while Dale and Courtney were getting busy.
How many broods can a pair of Northern Cardinals have in a year? I dunno, but the poor male is tired of it. There's one bird that still looks real young, and it flies after him constantly, begging and pestering. On Thursday night, the father stopped automatically feeding and started trying to drive it away. Doesn't work for long. The baby sits on the feeder and cries, works up his energy, and then chases again.
No wonder the poor father loves his private spa. I've gotten to recognize his little chip note although, I suppose, in theory, it's just like the other cardinal chip notes. But it's closer. I heard it Friday evening and went outside and there he was, taking a deep breath on the bird bath. Just sitting there enjoying the scene really, although eventually he did drink some water. Then it was back to the wars...the minute he emerges, the begging youngster is upon him again, chasing him all over the yard.
Of course, my own hands are kept pretty full. I had taken down the hummingbird feeders to clean then, but hadn't replaced them yet because I didn't want to disturb the poor Daddy's rest. So a sarcastic Ruby-throated Hummingbird was trying to get nectar out of the not-yet-open Turk's Cap flowers. Then he circled the spot where the feeder was supposed to be. Then he came over and flew at me. They can't squeak very loud so I couldn't hear the worst of the vile accusations, but I'm pretty sure it was something about the low quality of human beings you run into this time of century.
9:20 A.M. update: The father Northern Cardinal was back to tenderly escorting the youngest fledgling to and from the feeder this morning, as well as tenderly feeding the youngster. A good night's sleep does wonders.
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