Who? Us?

We are two disabled, oldish women who have been adventuring through life for years. We are talking about how disabilities, both visible and not, change the way we enjoy our retirement.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Fowl Foolishness

Birds do more than fly.  One of my favorite things is to watch birds do the "more" stuff.

We have some year 'round birds, some just stay for a season, some are "fly throughs".

The Tufted Titmouse and the Black-Capped Chickadee are year round.  And, come hell or high water, so is the turkey buzzard.     

The titmouse's name has nothing to do with mice; the "tit" refers to its small size.  The grey-bluish bird does have a top-notch and is very curious.  Look up and outside and the titmouse may just be perched on the windowsill, staring intently at you.  They'll also stare you down from the bird feeder and fuss and fuss, evidently quite irritated at being interrupted by them that fills the feeder. 

"My Little Chickadee" was a phrase Mae West often used in her films.  This cute-as-pie little birdie does look like he/she's wearing a black ball cap.  A few weeks ago, a movement caught my eye as I sat on our deck.  There was this little chickadee, hanging upside down from a long-stemmed, small, sunflower-like plant.  He wasn't eating anything, he was just swinging back and forth and bouncing up and down from the stem of this plant.

The gorgeous red bird couples fly in and stay a while.  They always come in pairs: the male, gloriously crimson, and the female, paler by far.  As with most birds, the female is usually not as colorful as the male, for her protection and her babes' safety.   

The female redbird is the "scout". Mr. RB goes no where without Mrs. RB checking things out first. They don't feed from the bird feeder, but from the ground.  The missus flies in, perches on a limb, has a look around.  Then she'll flutter to the ground and give it a once over.  She'll signal her beau, and then, and only then, will Mr. RB come down and feed. Yeah.  Male red birds are "chicken".

We also have a bird with OCD - Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.  Sad, but true.  The female Red-Bellied Woodpecker could really use a dose or two of bird Zoloft.  She may also have an identity disorder.  The fool who named this bird "red-bellied" must have first seen the bird dead and belly-up, 'cause that's the only way you'd notice the tiny red patch there.

Mrs. Red Bellied spends almost all her waking hours finding food and then taking that food and storing it elsewhere. Over and over again, she flies to the feeder, gets a sunflower seed, flies to a tree and shoves it in snugly, meticulously.  By nightfall, poor thing must be exhausted.

I have a theory about Mr. Red Belly, whose red head feathers sometimes flip up at the nap of his neck, "Elvis" style.  I think, when Mrs. Red Belly isn't looking, Mr. Red Belly, eats the food she has carefully stored - 'cause I've never seen the mister feeding on his own.  Wow!  He's gonna have hell to pay when she finds out.  

The strikingly beautiful Eastern Blue Bird is a fly through.  Last year, during their migration, hundreds flew into our sanctuary.  They ravaged the red berries from the dogwood about twenty feet from our living area windows.  Talk about a bird's eye view. Much better than Macy's parade by far.  Sadly, our dogwoods had only a few berries this year.  The flock sent one blue bird scout ahead to take a look at the sad, berry-less tree.  He did a once over, and flew away.

So this is my fowl post for today (sorry, couldn't resist).  More fowl stories to come.

Althea, have a great weekend.

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