Homesite Spring

Friday, March 19, 2021 (2 days before the official First Day of Spring)

On warm and windy yesterday I had to work, but came home early enough to enjoy some of the nice afternoon before high winds kicked up, bringing chill.

Before bringing the horses home from my neighbor’s pasture, I decided to clean the barn. While walking toward it, I noticed a female Western Bluebird flying into the barn, and so, paused to watch for her exit. It’s been a couple of years since Blues showed signs nesting in the barn, and frankly a relief. Pretty as they are, the birds are stupid, wedging nests into crevices tiny and vulnerable to my cat, Max.

Mountain Bluebird (Female)

This gal’s flight from the barn was delayed long enough to gather that she’s building a nest. I entered the barn, peered in all the likely places, and saw no tiny nest common for small birds. In past springs, Blues have built nests in my barn, and now, somewhere is a new one. Likely, at least one of the working mates was born in and fledged from my barn.

Again, I’ll keep a close eye on Max, maybe keep him inside for weeks. For one, because of possible baby birds. For another, because last year I saved a tiny bunny from Max’s jaws. The bunny has continued to nest under hay stacked in the barn. The other evening, I saw mine (probably “a she”) and her buddy Cottontail hopping around, and said to myself, “Uh oh, baby bunnies.”

I love bunnies and have learned that those born wild must stay so. Instead of trapping baby, I kept Max inside long enough for a juvie to gain strength and awareness. Finally, when Max went to check out the barn, he discovered bunny…and baby noticed Max. Thus began their yearlong standoff. To this day, every morning Max searches for bunny and fails to find. There’s evidence though of its nearness and wellness.

Today, I will search better for the Bluebird nest in order to keep an eye on it. I’ll count the days, and before an egg can hatch, will have Max inside the house. Poor thing, also might have to outwait bunny infancies.

Dear Friends: Promising for myself today, a visit to emerging spring up in the mountains. Diana

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