in this day of "stressed economy", it would seem that building a new home would be on the bottom of the priority list, but today i witnessed just the opposite. as i was driving to church for the 2nd day of our "chicken extravaganza" (post on that will come later when someone shows me how to get my photos on this), a small bird flew over the road . it caught my eye as there was a piece of grass, or string about a foot long dangling from his beak. this is always a welcomed sight as it indicates that nests are being built, eggs will be laid, and spring is finally here.
i can just imagine the excitement when that feathered boy showed up with that choice building "block" for the new home. that was probably a foundation piece that will be wrapped around a branch for stability. birds are neat- they will go to great lengths for the materials they need for a comfy, hopefully, safe nest. i have seen nests with easter grass, string, yarn, hair, mud, as well as paper used for building.
birds aren't the only critters that are resourceful when it comes to building their abodes. we had red squirrels in our garage before it was converted to "red squirrel" cottage collectibles shop. one morning, i looked out my kitchen window and noticed that a scrap piece of sheet in the garage used for rags, was moving up the side of the garage door. upon further scrutiny, i could see a little reddish head that held the corner of the sheet in its mouth- a red squirrel- headed to the attic of the garage. this was hard work. can you imagine holding a king size bedspread in your mouth and climbing up a wall? i admired their tenacity and when we tore the ceiling down in the garage, we were all amazed at the extent of their nests. what appeared to be tons of shredded material mixed with leaves and empty nut shells fell down on us.( we relocated them in a squirrel box on a tree next to the shop, but i don't think they've ever forgiven us).
last year we had a robin tugging at a wire to no avail and another one took the string price tag off an item outside my shop and flew away with his $4.99 prize dangling from his beak.
years ago i bought a framed photo from a local artist . he had photographed a humming bird sitting on her nest- newly made. it was situated in a lilac bush and was constructed of lichens and tree moss. such a delicate work of art, but sturdy and perfect for her family.
well, soon their homes will be finished and pieces of blue,brown and white eggshells will be found on the ground beneath them. nature never ceases to amaze me and to teach me to stop, enjoy and care for the wonders of this lovingly created world.
4 weeks ago