Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Hatched Birds

This is a follow up to my last post.

Yesterday I was out in the garage picking out some glass for my next project, and I heard some loud chirping sounds. I remembered the bird's nest right outside our front door and knew that the birds had hatched, and it sounded like more than one baby! I went inside the house to look at the calendar to see how long it had been since I had first noticed the nest, and it had been 3 weeks. I usually leave my house from the garage door and I'm also usually in my car so I don't notice the birds.

Quickly I picked up my camera and went out the front door to take a look at the nest. As usual, the mother bird flew out of her nest to distract me away from her growing babies. I got out the ladder so I could climb up closer and see how big the little birds were. Even with the ladder I couldn't get quite high enough to take a peek. The nest looked a lot fluffier than the last time that I checked it so I thought that the mother bird had brought in some feathers to line her nest. On the ground under the nest were quite a few bird drippings, but I decided that wouldn't be unusual because the amount of time that the nest had been there. I raised my camera as high as I could and took a photo. The birds very very, very quiet and very very still. I didn't want to scare them, so I tried to be very quick about taking the picture. I'd have to wait until I was inside and downloaded the pictures onto my computer before I could see what was actually there.

To my surprise there were several birds, and they weren't babies without feathers, either! I saw at least three, and there might have been another one, but I don't really think there was any more space for any more. It was definitely crowded in there. Well, I also discovered that it wasn't feathers lining their nest to make it more cozy....... The new birds looked like they were as big as their mother, and their nest was very messy. No wonder! That was a lot of birds in a tiny space together. They have to have all of their feathers before they can fly out of their nest, and I'm not sure how long it had been since they had hatched.

That was so fun to see. I wonder when they will be big enough to fly away? I wonder how many bugs the mother bird has to bring home every day to feed her 'not so small' birds? I've read that a bird can eat as much as twice their weight in food, so if she only had 3 birds plus herself how much food would that be if she were about the size of a half cup? Wow, that's 4 cups of bugs a day! What do you think about that?

I looked up what kind of sparrows live in Bakersfield, and as near as I can tell, it's called a nesting house sparrow. Here's a picture that I found of what they might look like closer up.

Bird in it's Nest

The first part of this post was written on May 20th, exactly 3 weeks ago today.

Here is a picture of a bird that made it's nest just under the roof of our garage. When we go outside the mother bird flies away so we won't find her nest.

If you look closely, you can see her hiding in the nest because you can see the tip of her beak.

We're not sure what kind of bird it is.
We think that it's a little brown sparrow.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

My First Blog

As I began to create my first blog, I was given the option at the end of telling about to answer a random question. The question said: 'The children are waiting! Please tell them the story about the bald frog with the wig': "OK fine" as my grandaughter says. Actually, I want to do this blog because I don't live near any of my grandkids and I want to post some stories about our famiy so they can get to know us better. So I began to make up a story. As I finished the story and pressed the 'save' button, I was given an error message that said, "Must be 800 characters or less". Now they tell me. So this is how I'll begin my first blog....with the story. And since my favorite stories have some kind of lesson to be learned, here goes.......

Once there was a little old frog named Flix. He had a round body and very long legs. His arms were short but his fingers were also very long. He could jump higher than all of his friends. He loved to jump! He jumped everywhere he went. He didn’t hop or skip, he just jumped. This is how he jumped. He'd scrunch down, tight as a ball, count to three and then LEAP upward with all the strength he had!

He had a board that he fastened to the outside of his house that had rubber prongs sticking out of it that he could hit each time he jumped. Each time he leaped he tried to touch a higher one than before. Because his fingers were so long they aided him in reaching up so high.

Like other frogs he had beautiful, moist, green skin that sparkled in the sunlight, and glistened in the moonlight. When it rained, the rain would just roll off his skin in large drops and leave him as dry as can be. But unlike other frogs he had brown bumps on his head that brought all kinds of curious questions from little frogs. The older frogs were too polite to ask questions, but he noticed them staring at him quite often when they thought he wasn't looking. Have you ever see a frog with brown bumps only on their heads? Neither have I. It was very embarrassing for him.

He decided to solve his problem by buying himself a wig to cover the brown spots. He looked in all the shops that sold frog wigs until he found just the one that he liked. It was pure white with curls rolling all different directions so that he never had to care for it any more than just shaking it out every now and then. He wore it every time he went out of his house. Now he didn't get questions or stares at his brown bumps on his head any more. Guess what he got? You're right! He got questions and stares about his new white wig. O what should he do now? Whenever he tried to jump with his friends his wig flew off. Whenever he swam in the water with his friends his wig floated off. Whenever the day was hot beads of perspiration dripped from underneath his wig right down his nose and onto the floor! This would never do! It was worse than before!

"I know what I'll do this time" he said, I'll paint my brown bumps green!" And he did. But his new green bumps didn't glisten in the sunshine like his other skin, and his new green bumps itched him until he scratched all the paint off and he was left with his old brown bumps with scabs on them. Again, no better.

This time he thought and thought. "What if I just count every one of them and when the little frogs ask me about them I'll have something to tell them instead of trying to pretend they’re not there." So that's what he did. How many do you think he counted? Five, ten, fifteen? He counted seventeen brown bumps! Six large ones, seven medium ones, and four very small ones! Is that how many you guessed? That's a lot of bumps to have on one frog's head, isn't it?

After that he had a fun time looking for little frogs so that they could ask him about his brown spots on his head. He never again tried to pretend they weren’t there. As for the older frogs, whenever he noticed them looking at his brown spots he quietly turned around and smiled at them. They always smiled back. Now THAT was better!