Up…..and down….and Away!

Our babies have left home:

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The nest looks big and empty and it’s so quiet round here now, without them.

But, fascinating though it was observing wildlife close at hand, it became quite stressful too ~ particularly for Indie. Whenever she was allowed into the courtyard, (and sometimes when she wasn’t!) she stationed herself on watch beneath the nest.

It was amazing how quickly the adult pair adapted to her presence. With complete faith in their own ability, they swooped out within inches of her head. Loaded with grubs, they’d sneak back home via a plum tree at the rear. When she became too inquisitive, they’d bob along the top of a nearby arch, cheeping impatiently until I shooed the pesky mutt inside.

When we first discovered that a Blackbird Family had moved into the ivy on our fence, we could only hear the hatchlings chirping from the depths of their twiggy crib. A few days later three hungry beaks poked up over the rim, like their nursery~rhyme namesakes~in~a~pie, crying ‘Feed me NOW!’

On Wednesday morning, while Mum and Dad were out worm~hunting, I took a sneaky peek and it was shocking. In just over a week the delicate chicks had grown enormous Their combined weight had tipped the nest forward, so I could see them clearly, squabbling for space like cranky teenagers, ever hungry for more food. And there was I worrying that they’d be too traumatised by Indie’s avid interest to survive!

By that afternoon Mama Bird had clearly had enough. Deciding that it was time the kids moved out, she landed on the arch, a tempting morsel dangling from her beak and called, ‘Dinner’s ready, come and get it!’ But the lazy teens refused to budge out of their comfort zone ~ and they were never going to with eager canine eyes fixed on their every move. So I dragged Indie away from ‘Fledgling Watch’, keeping her indoors with us, to allow them privacy.

That must have done the trick. When I looked again the following morning only one fat chick remained nest~bound. And, as soon as it spotted my giant face peering at it through the ivy, it launched itself from the furthest edge, onto the ground beyond the fence:

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I hurried though the gate to offer a helping hand but Mother Nature had it covered. The parents landed on the porch roof and pattered back and forth, keeping lookout and cooing encouragement. ‘C’mon buddy, you can do this. Spread your wings and fly….we’re birds, that’s what we do!’

So I left them to it.

When I checked back later, junior had taken flight and Papa Bird was wheeling up above, as if in victory:

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And that’s the last we saw of them.

Now Indie can reclaim her favourite spot for basking in the sun:

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And we can all relax.
🙂

Author: Jacqueline King

Happily retired and living each day as it comes. I have enough, I am content. It doesn't get better than that! 😍

7 thoughts on “Up…..and down….and Away!”

    1. Thank you Brenda ~ it was a mixed blessing, playing host to these uninvited guests and something of a relief now they’ve survived and flown But I’ll always treasure those precious moments, sitting quietly and observing them at such close hand! Hats off to you and Paul too, for nurturing your own avian visitors! 🙂

    1. Thank you, Joss, I learned so much from them in a few short days and I’m thrilled that they survived. Indie seemed to think she was they were her babies, rather than trying to chase them off, thank goodness! She’s loving the peace now ~ and so are we!;)

  1. What a great story! 😀 They were lucky that they chose such a wonderful place to build a nest, where it wouldn’t be removed or damaged by someone who might not have appreciated them the way you and Indie did. Reminds me of the Beatles’ song…
    “Blackbird singing in the dead of night
    Take these broken wings and learn to fly
    All your life
    You were only waiting for this moment to arise.” 🙂 Maybe they will come back again next year!

    1. When I was trying to learn to play guitar, I used to murder that song, Corina! We’ve seen the birds foraging in the front garden, where Indie is not allowed out on her own, so maybe they’re raising another brood where they won’t be disturbed so much? This place is like a mini nature reserve, even though it’s on the outskirts of a town. I love it! 🙂

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