I’ve never got to watch baby birbs growing up, let alone baby cardinals, so they’re getting their own page. It’ll be easier to find them later than it would with their pictures scattered over different posts.
On May 30th, I discovered that there was a reason Onje and P had flushed a female cardinal from the purple smoke tree so many times. A nest-y sort of reason.
I left her alone for a while, then on June 5th, I found out for sure that it was a real, working nest (don’t know whether cardinals ever make decoys like wrens do).
They couldn’t be more than a day old or maybe two. Taken June 9th.
June 11th. Growing up fast; they’ve got tiny feathers, but their eyes are still closed.
June 13th brings more feathers, and open eyes. Also baby head-fuzz. Not cute yet, but they’re growing fast.
Copying this from the post I did after I made the playpen for the Baby Cs. I’ll remove the duplicates of images that appear above.
So P was very concerned (and I was as well) about the cats’ increased interest once the Baby Cs start moving around and peeping for their parents, so I decided to erect (hehe…erect) a temporary fence around the shrubs and part of the patio. It cost me a small fortune–that plastic poultry fencing is not cheap–and Buchheit had no posts tall enough for the fencing, and it’s not pretty, but if it saves the Baby Cs and helps Mr and Mrs, who have worked so hard, then it’s worth it. It won’t keep out dedicated cats, but it should be fine to keep out well-fed, kind of lazy cats that are mildly curious about the odd sounds in the shrubbery.
Should the step-in posts prove inadequate, I’ll grab some of the T-posts that I have around flowerbeds; Christ knows we haven’t got enough rain this year, nor had a spring long enough for my flowers to grow tall enough to need roping off.
Since it’s ugly and inconveniently placed to make people walk around, so people walking around will want to know why, and it’s a playpen for cardinal children, I made a sign.
Me, sweating my arse off, installing the playpen fence, caught on the security camera.
This morning, I was DYING to see the babies, and the parents had just fed them and flown away, so I hatched (hatched–ha!) a plan to get inside and take a picture. It involved two chairs from the back patio, and silent gratitude that the neighbours were still asleep.
Again, caught on camera, making my escape after leaving one of the chairs over there for next time. 😀
So, on the 15th, after work, I was going to take a new picture of the BBCs (haha–geddit! BBC?) but the male was hanging around, and I didn’t want to disturb him. I thought I’d just take one early Saturday morning. I dutifully checked on Saturday morning, but I soon discovered why the male had been around only briefly that morning…he was taking my grandchildren away! I went over the fence, and the nest was empty. Not destroyed, but just empty. The parents didn’t come looking for the babies at all, so I’m quite certain that a predator didn’t get them. Cardinals spend only 7-12 days in the nest, and ours were at 10 days, assuming they hatched on the 7th. I miss the little dudes, but hopefully I’ll see them again, even if I don’t recognize them as the Patio Cs.