Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Eggstra, Eggstra! Read all about it!

(Wow, the eggciting terms just keep on coming. Hee!)

First, the good news - another baby birdie has hatched in the nest! The new finch baby is a lot smaller than the presumptive sparrow, as one might expect given the difference in egg sizes.

Now, the bad news - it doesn't appear that the baby sparrow has survived. It looked quite still and as though it was not breathing when I took the baskets down as they were being blown almost perpendicular in yesterday's thunderstorms. (I continue to try to disturb the nest as little as possible, so I do not touch the actual nest and am going only on brief, visual observation here.) Mama finch is still tending to/sitting on the nest, so I don't think it is a case of abandonment. Hubby speculates that perhaps once the baby finch appeared, Mama figured out the first baby was not one of hers and stopped caring for it. Who knows? (Probably some ornithologist, but we're certainly not bird experts.) All I know is, I hope that I am wrong and the sparrow chick is still alive, but if it is dead, I hope Mama finch removes it from the nest and not just to the porch floor, as happened last year. (Ick.) So, that's two eggs down, four to go!

(Side note: it cooled down during the storm front yesterday, which enabled me to turn off the central air and open the windows to air out the house. Papa Finch was most displeased with his apparently new found awareness of our cat, who had immediately planted herself in an opened upstairs window - not the window nearest the petunia baskets, mind you. He perched on the roof about 3 feet away from where she was sunning herself and minding her own business and cheeped at her quite angrily. She looked at me with this "Huh?!? What did I do?" expression and after a few more minutes of him cheeping, she hopped down out of the windowsill and stalked off into the back of the house, away from Papa finch. After she left the window, he stopped cheeping and flew away.)

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