Well, I know they’re always alive, but now they’re full of fluttering and squawking baby birds too. It’s such fun to sit on the deck and watch the fledglings begging their parents for food. I haven’t yet been able to get a picture of the baby chickadees, but here’s one of the adorable little woodpecker fledglings.
And we had a brief mystery the other day when we saw this:
The mother is so much smaller than the baby, right? But she was clearly feeding him, as seen here:
After a few minutes of being puzzled, and then Eric saying that the baby looked like a cowbird, I suddenly realized what was going on here. Brown-headed cowbirds lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, and the other birds become surrogate parents, raising the babies as their own. Smart, huh? So apparently this Tree Sparrow got duped into caring for this very demanding cowbird chick. The baby is keeping his “mom” on the run constantly. I feel sorry for the little female — she needs a babysitter so she can catch her breath!