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Sunday, May 6, 2007

Back Home Again

The Tree Swallows are back
Tachycineta bicolor L 5 ¾” (15 cm)

The day I posted my last blog, I walked out the cottage door to the patio and looked across the field toward the water. As if upon command, the sky opened up and in the distance I saw dots heading this way at great speed. I gazed amazed at the blue angel precision flying through the carved out of the woods opening at the water, a right turn glide to sweep the length of the homesteaded field and back. Quick turns and excited chatter announce the arrival of the swallow’s fresh arrival from South America or perhaps the West Indies and a focused feeding, a feast of mosquitoes waiting. I am overjoyed that they survived one more year to follow God’s command on their life to be fruitful and multiply. Although only six this year, I hear them chattering and then one heads right to the nest box on the post and my heart welcomes the tree swallow family back. We put up the nest box about ten years ago, after seeing what we thought were violet green swallows to entice the cavity nesters to stay. Since then we’ve been privileged to see 10 years of successful tree swallow broods.

I guess the excitement of the swallows reminds me of summers returning to Nova Scotia, my parent’s birthplace, traveling the 800 miles north by car. As we crossed the Nova Scotia border and heard the piper playing my mother and I would start crying that we were going home, and then landed at our grandparent’s home which never seemed to change. We would get together with relatives, cousins and sing, feast and have fun and have the freedom in the fields to roam.

and the House Wrens
Troglodytes aedon L 4 ¾ (12cm)

I have been trying to figure out what bird this was that claimed the old tree swallow nest box this week and concluded it was a house wren, tail not raised, returning from S. California or Mexico. The female busied herself all week gathering twigs and grass for the nest while the male sang and stood fast, protecting the territory.

A few days later, perhaps the same pair of House Wrens moved here when the flicker started drumming at 8 a.m. on the top of their box!

“In His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.” Job 12:10

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