May 6, 2009

Front Door Bird

About a month ago a mourning dove and her mate built a lovely nest on the inside top of one of the columns on my front porch. They worked very hard on it and then the mama bird took it for a test run. None of us noticed that they had been nest-building right outside the front door and so kept up our usual comings and goings, much to the dismay of mama dove who clearly grew weary of flying to the nearest wire every time the front door opened. She abandoned her nest for a quieter location. It sat empty for only a few short days.

Then last week another, clearly enterprising or merely lazy, bird took up residence in the nest and happily laid her eggs in it (much to my dismay as I was going to climb up and steal it for the antique bird cage in my studio). For the first few days we used only the back door to spare the new mama the need to lure us away from her future babies fifty times a day, but that fast grew old, especially for those of us with regular baggage. So now we come and go through the front door as we always do, and when we linger a bit too long beneath the nest, rather than fly off in a tizzy, Mrs. Bird simply turns her head up and pretends we aren't standing right below her and watching her from just a few feet away.

At first we thought she was a cat bird as we've been hearing one meowing in that funny way they do very near to the front of the house, but closer inspection has revealed the mama bird to be a robin. That's okay with me as I'd love to collect the remains of her babies' egg shells once they hatch to replace the ones I used to have that were eaten by Maia Louise in a typical fit of bad behavior.

I can't wait until I hear the teensy tweets of tiny robins from my front porch and even teenier heads peeping out of the nest at us as we walk by. It will be so exciting when they finally arrive!

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