I’m making them a page instead of a bunch of posts for the same reason as last time; to make them easier to find.
2019-05-24 – I was pleased to see two eggs from Mr and Mrs C this year. I found the next on 2019-05-20.
2019-05-27 – I was even more pleased to see a third egg, though I did wonder for a little while whether it was a cowbird egg, since it was later than the others, and the speckles looked a bit different. The third egg is the one at the top.
2019-06-06 – I call them the D-day Babies because they hatched on D-day.
2019-06-08. Two days old, and still incredibly ugly, but already starting to get fevvers!
2019-06-09. Moving the branches definitely gets their attention because they think one of the parents has come to feed them. At this point, they eat, sleep, eat, sleep. Fevvers coming along nicely, eyes starting to open.
2019-06-10 – I accidentally had the flash on, which I usually don’t because I can’t imagine they like it, but their eyes are open, and they’re not shy about letting me know that I’m a giant disappointment because I don’t have food. Still ugly as a can of toads packed arse-up, but growing fast!
Also the 10th. Their parents are being run off their tail feathers, keeping these little guys fed, and as soon as each one eats, it immediately face-plants and goes back to sleep in the little pile of ugly.
2019-06-11 – Still butt-ugly, and their fevvers look like porcupine quills, but they’re growing fast!
2019-06-13 – In the morning. Bad photo because I was trying to hurry, but we are seven (days) and looking much more bird-y. Fevvers coming along nicely, no porcupine quills.
201906-13 – After work. We aren’t messing around with those fevvers!
When I got home on Friday, I’d hoped to see the little dudes, but the nest was empty. I went in the house, terribly disappointed, but unsurprised because that’s exactly what happened last year.
I went back outside later, and decided to look again, just in case. I didn’t want to get too close, and of course the light is awful within the tree, but there was one pissed-off little face, looking at me. I snapped a quick shot, and went about my business.
After P got home, I was inside, and again came outdoors. As soon as I stepped outside, I heard a chorus of PIK-PIK! PIK-PIK! and saw Mr and Mrs C, dive-bombing…something. “Something” turned out to be poor old Bulky, who was just sitting on the patio, minding his own damned business, but the birbs were having none of it! I thought there had to be a reason, so, remembering the little dude from earlier, I went looking. Lo and behold, between the garage wall and Ravon, was…Little C. Poor old Bulk finally got up and left, so the parents calmed down a little, but not much!
I noticed the toes on one of Little C’s feet were curled, and thought, “Oh, no…his foot is deformed!” I didn’t know where Onje was, but I did know Little C couldn’t fly far, if indeed he could do more than glide on tiny wings he wasn’t sure how to work, and with nearly no rudder, so I picked him up, and looked for a safe place to put him. He didn’t seem frightened, but when I put him up against my fuzzy robe (it was chilly), he snuggled in as if he was cold, so I covered him with my hand. His parents were making a racket, but didn’t dive-bomb me, so I wandered around for a few minutes, looking for somewhere to put him, and took another picture.
In the end, I just put him back in the smoketree because there was no spot where he’d be safe from cats, but visible to his parents, and I knew they were watching me, and also that they’d look in the nest tree if they couldn’t find him. They nearly deafened me with their PIK-PIK! PIK-PIK! calls to coax him to…wherever they wanted him, but eventually, they must have succeeded because I was on Catwatch Duty, and listened as they moved farther away into the edge of the woods, and calmed down.
So, there are 2019’s Baby Cs, grown into Little Cs, and off to learn from their parents how to be birbs…or in our case, Fevvered Freeloaders. Oh, and his toes are fine; he was able to grip the branch with no trouble. I think he just wasn’t accustomed to “toes on flat surface” and wasn’t sure how they worked, either.