Apr 21, 2012

The Flycatcher comes home

An Earlier writing from a few years back....

JUNE 2009:   OMGosh what a glorious day in our garden. This season in our backyard we have had the privilege of watching a pair of Bluebirds return to their shanty and raise two clutches, another pair of bluebirds moved into a new box (or the 1st pair upgraded finally), and they are in the midst of raising a family right nowJ  and as I write you can hear our red bellied woodpecker baby chirping away each time mom and dad come back with a tasty morsel for it. 
"The Red Bellied Woodpecker"

    The wrens also have returned to the posts of the above ground pool, and the mockingbirds are forever swooping down on us and the dogs, protecting whichever of the nests it finally managed to start a family in. But to my surprise we managed to entice a titmouse to move into a house, I was very excited until I realized unfortunately it was, at the expense of the flycatcher that visits our backyard each year, actually…the very first bird to take up residence here. It was my first homemade birdhouse. It was designed for a woodpecker or an owl, but I was just as happy to see that unfamiliar bird sitting high on a perch on the tallest thing in our backyard 6 years ago.  She came back year after year, even when Hurricane Charlie took out our pine tree pole, and we used a shorter 4x4 for replacement, she still nested there. 
"My Fly Catcher"

     Last year I got worried because the perch had fallen off, and I kept forgetting to find a new one. Upon her return though, under a watchful eye I quickly hot glued a new one in place. Yet again she moved right in, to raise her babies.  She faithfully returned each and every year...and I faithfully looked forward to it.....

    So you can imagine how crushed I was the day she returned and I witnessed the titmouse that had already started a clutch of her own, swoop at her repeatedly to chase her away, with every attempt she made to move in.  It made my heart just ache.

     I quickly got to work and constructed a new house the exact dimensions of the last, and raised it high in the air, to the original 15 feet it was, souring above everything surrounding it. It took me just a few days, but that was not fast enough, and my sweet Flycatcher was not seen again. (That was April)……until this Sunday, that is, way up on the highest branch of the maple tree, looking guard, was no other than my sweet Flycatcher, the same treetop she has used for the last 6 years. The titmouse family have moved out, and I can only hope that she is giving her old home another chance, but whether or not she moves in this season remains to be seen. What I do know is this….she remembers…..and I feel pretty confident she will return again next year, to our yard looking for a home to raise her babies, now hopefully she’ll have a few to choose from! 

"The bluebirds"
   TODAY:  That was three long years ago.....and my sweet flycatcher did not nest that year, nor the season of 2010, or 2011....I watched and was disappointed every season....but this week as I sat out back watching all the songbirds crisscross across the yard in the new bird garden....there she was.....sitting high on the perch of "that" birdhouse, and she was going in! She was making it home!....It's been a very busy birdhouse over the past few years, it raises a few clutches each year, usually Bluebirds and Titmouse.....A young family of Bluebirds  just fledged  a few weeks ago and my daughter and I got to watch as the mom and dad coaxed their two babies into flying! Our first witness of an actual fledging...eeeeek 15 feet is a long way down for a bitty bird that can't yet fly!    

    As I sat outside this morning in awe of ALL the birds this yard attracts....I watched the wren making her second nest of the season on the patio, this time in the mushroom birdhouse the cuban tree frog was living in, and another pair of bluebirds are just finishing raising their first clutch out behind bunnyville, it's been a great season.....we also had our first flock of ceder waxwings visiting the mulberry bush, they stayed all month, along with plenty of catbirds who visit when the mulberries are ripe ..but nothing has made me smile as much as  knowing that our flycatcher is finally back home to raise another family.....She sits high on the tallest Sycamore branch and looks out over the entire yard now as I write.....She started coming here when we offered very little, her house at 15 feet was the tallest thing in the yard, now with all the trees and bushes grown well beyond that height, well....now she sits up there like she is Queen of the garden.........and righfully so....once again!

I hope the Spring Birds have returned to your yard...with a little food and shelter you may be surprised what will move right in! So don't forget....Spread some seed.....janine

Matthew 8:20
And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man hath not where to lay his head