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>> Sunday, May 16, 2010

Our chickadee family (round two) seems to be thriving.  While I haven't yet provided them with a cat-safe bird bath, I did at least eliminate the puddles in the tarp over the wood pile that I believe sealed the fate of the last chickadee that tried out my nest box.

Stupid cat.  I still haven't forgiven him for eating my chickadee.

The current pair of chickadees is busy, busy, busy.  They have 7 hungry babies demanding a steady supply of worms.  It's incredible how much louder and more insistent their tiny peeps become each day.

This afternoon I popped open the little window on the nest box and peered in, and was delighted when I made a tiny noise that made all their little heads pop up with beaks wide open.  Awwww.  Really, they're sort of hideous if one looks at them objectively - blind purplish enormous closed eyelids, little damp looking spikes that will hopefully become downy feathers, purply gray naked skin, and big frowny beaks.

Yet when they tip up their heads and open their peeping little beaks in unison they sort of ooze charm.  Unless you're one of their harried parents, of course.  Just contemplating having 7 kids who are that continuously demanding makes me exhausted.

Mom and dad were busy scolding me and hopping about my head in the branches of the apple tree, so I quickly closed the window and retreated a distance.  The parents are so tame they will almost eat out of my hand, or, alternatively, land on my head while I'm filling the feeders.  Why is it that wild birds being so tame is so appealing?  Although they think us humans are okay, they aren't thrilled when I get close to the box.  I cannot blame them a bit.  Since the babies soon will have real feathers I won't be able to peek at them again since I don't want to run the risk of causing them to fledge too soon.

After watching the parents today, I really want to know how they can make that much noise scolding me with beaks chock full of worms?  And how do they find that many worms?


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