Sunday, June 7, 2015

Birdbrain.

We've had a lot of robins around here this spring, as I've noted before. Now, one of them has decided to move in. 



Scared the hell out of me.

The deck is pretty high. One morning I walked under it to look for yellow jacket nests (it's a favorite spot for them to build, so I have to check it frequently in the spring) and the robin shot out of the nest, bonking her head (I assume it's female) a couple of times on the way out. I'd since hoped to get a picture of the bird in the nest, or a short video, but she always flees before I can get close enough with the phone.

I don't think that this is the smartest robin going. Before this nest got done, there had been several abortive nests up in the joists under the deck: a small pile of grass here, a piece of plastic cord there, a little muddy lump over here, all on spots exposed to the fast winds we sometimes get. Wikipedia reports that "Bird banders have found that only 25% of young robins survive the first year." If they're all this good at making nests, I can't say I'm surprised.

But it's a pity. Robins have a pretty song, and as tenants go, they're not too bad. If they eat yellow jackets, I might give them a stipend.

Anyway, I'll always have a soft spot for robins, one that has nothing to do with Batman. No, it was because of their mention in Jethro Tull's sweet song, "Home":
Down steep and narrow lanes I see the chimneys smoking
above the golden fields ... know what the robin feels
in his summer jamboree.
All elements agree
in sweet and stormy blend ---
midwife to winds that send me home.
I like home. Home is nice.
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