Tuesday, June 7, 2011
It appears blogging has been put on the back burner for a few days.The heat has been unreal here lately,so I usually get out early to get things done around the property.First thing of a morning,though,we drink our morning cup or two, of coffee,usually in the porch swing.Today,I went out early,since Pop was running a little late on awakening.I sat for a spell and observed the pair of Purple Martins that have built in the Bluebird box.That has been our morning ritual for a couple of weeks now. I watched for quite a while,only seeing the male bird, perched up on the flagpole, and one of the cats,lying at the base of the tree,watching the Bluebird box ever so intently. Since I saw no activity in the birdhouse, I quickly assumed that Lucky had caught and eaten the Mother Martin. I immediately,got a sick feeling in my stomach, and began to cry incessantly. I haven't cried for quite some time. I hardly ever take my Sertraline unless things get really unbearable, thus I hadn't taken it for a few weeks.And yes,I do know,that that is not the recommended way to take an anxiety medication,but it works for me.Nevertheless, this was definitely an occasion that deserved a few tears.Pop awoke and joined me on the porch,trying to comfort me as best he could. We discussed putting an add in the paper to give the two cats away.That only made me cry more. I love my cats, but I love my little Martins,too. Especially this pair that has made their home in the Bluebird box. We had watched them prepare their home for many days.Spending time together. Courting. Lovemaking. Building their nest. Laying their eggs. I think they now have five tiny white eggs.The last few days, they have been collecting feathers to line their nest. Something I had not observed before.Truthfully, I had not observed the other Martins behaving at all like this pair.I guess that's why we watched them so intently.It has been fascinating to watch their every move.One day,the male had been collecting the feathers,and bringing them back to the nest for the Mother to arrange.Once we watched him make several passes at the birdhouse with the feather still in his beak,but never stopping to give her the feather. Suddenly, the Mother bird came out of the house to where he was perched on the flagpole.She yanked the feather from his beak, and flew back to her nest,as if to say,"If you want something done right,do it yourself."It was so funny to watch them.
Shortly,after shedding several tears over the situation, and shooting several pellets in the general area of the cat, and chasing him away several times with the broom, a second bird appears, back on the scene. Both birds were acting very strange though. Circling the nest repeatedly,appearing very much, like this might not be the same pair.Very curious behavior.There has been another couple of Martins that have tried a few times to run this pair off,but the original pair stood their ground,and held tight to their little home.The longer we watched, the more we were convinced that this must be the original pair of Martins.I worried for quite some time,while I was crying. What would happen now, if the Mother had been killed? Don't they mate for life? Would he finish the job of hatching the eggs? Would he hunt another mate to finish the job?Would he pine away over her loss? Would the little eggs go unhatched? These are some of the questions that were running through my mind,before the Mother bird finally returned.Now that she's back, I am feeling so much better. I took the Bluebird box and moved it up higher on the tree, about another foot. I had wanted to do that days ago, but Pop thought it might scare them away completely,if I moved it, so I didn't,at that time.Today,I decided to take my chances. What did I have to loose? It appears the cat can only jump as high as the original height of the box.I am only hoping the birds are quick enough,not to get caught by Lucky,now that I have moved it up a bit.He appears to be the most determined to catch the birds.Minnie is usually close by,but not quite as aggressive.I have wrapped a piece of hog wire fencing around the base of the tree to deter the cats.They were climbing the tree easily before I did that,but not so much now.I only hope my nerves will hold up until the baby birds are hatched,if indeed,they make it that far.Next year,I will try moving the Bluebird box even higher,just in case this same pair decides to return.I hope to post an update as soon as the story of the young couple unfolds.