The Coast News Group
Small Talk

Our home has gone to the birds

We’ve got birds. Now I’d like to know what kind they are.

I don’t want to know badly enough to sit still and take photos. I keep wishing I could record their songs and match them on the Internet, but that’s unlikely, too.

Everyone has birds, you say. True, but our bird population has really grown these past few years. They began to hang around more once we no longer had two breeds of bird dog, leaping around our backyard. But the real change has come since my retired husband turned the yard into 10 raised garden beds.

Apparently, our garden offers the perfect blend of insects and produce. We did cover the blueberries and strawberries with a bird net, but our winged visitors seem to manage on whatever is left. I also suspect that hope springs eternal in the birdie breast, much like in our dogs. If they can see it, there is always a chance they might get a bite of it.

And since my husband is the king of organic gardening, I expect we offer a wider selection of bugs than some.

Therefore, birds are my new best friends. Anything, from bats to birds, that will dispose of insects without leaving any residue (well, no toxic residue) goes right to the top of my favorite things list.

And this week, my husband reported some Alfred Hitchcock moments, as birds began to gather around him. I guess they have decided that he is just some sort of moving plant. Since he has been out in the yard every day for six months, they have begun to occasionally perch near him and just stare. First there was a dove that walked around the yard for a few days. Then some LBB’s (little brown birds) that landed nearby.

Then the hummingbird began just hovering about, after initially dive-bombing him, just to make sure he knew she meant business regarding avoidance of her nest. It appears he has passed the friend-or-enemy test.

I rather expect to walk out and see him recreating that scene from “Snow White,” where she sings and the birds land on her arms and shoulders and sing with her. I just hope the neighbors don’t notice.

Jean Gillette is a freelance writer married to a St. Francis wannabe. Contact her at [email protected].