The young mockingbird fledgelings have decided they like us.
Oak in particular took a liking to our backyard, and particularly
the lawn. It seems he wants to be a quail when he grows up: he loves
to run (not hop) around the yard, and flies only when threatened
(though once he gets going, he flies quite competently). When he's
not being a quail he practices being a wren, cocking his tail up
the way wrens do.
I managed to get couple of
Cedar likes the backyard too, but stays above ground in the chinquapin or the orange tree. In the evenings, they sing a duet, somewhat lower EEPs from Cedar and higher ones from Oak (Oak can sing two notes, but when Cedar's singing Oak takes the soprano line). Holly remains in the front yard, a distant third EEP.
Meanwhile, I've finally managed to attract some goldfinches to the thistle sock hanging outside the office window. Photos (not good ones) here.
Update: Oak continued to play quail in the backyard for the next
week, gradually spending more time flying and less time EEPing for
his parents. The turning point was when Oak and Cedar discovered the sweet
petals of the guava tree's flowers. It takes some flying skill to
get into a guava tree: you have to hover a bit while you pick your
entry spot, then power your way in. The chicks begged their parents
to get them guava petals, but when the petals didn't materialize
fast enough they got motivated to improve their flying skills to
get their own petals. By May 22 they were pretty much fending for
themselves, emitting an occasional half-hearted EEP but mostly
foraging for themselves. I see them both most evenings, but I never
see three chicks at one time; I may have been wrong about there
being a third chick, though it certainly seemed that way on that
[ 21:46 May 12, 2008 More nature/birds | permalink to this entry | comments ]