Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Uninvited House Guests
Last week while outside in the backyard with our pug Mina awaiting her morning deposit, l looked up at the ledge between the middle living room window door and wood paneling and noticed several small branches and twigs that seem to constitute a bird nest. On closer inspection, I noticed what I took to be a pigeon - the dreaded rats of the air - so I grabbed a snow shovel and poked away at the nest, frightening off the bird but unable to dislodge the nest. Afterwards, I went upstairs with broom in hand, prepared to rid myself of this encroacher, this threat to domestic tranquility, this trespasser on private property. Opening the door, I looked down at the nest and noticed two small eggs. If I had succeeded in knocking the nest from its perch, I am embarrassed to say that I would have destroyed them both. So I closed the door, hoping that the expectant mother would return to the nest. When I told my wife Jyll about the discovery, she informed me that the birds in question were Mourning Doves. I am happy to report that the eggs are receiving proper attention, both the male and female returning to takes turns sitting in the nest (I have learned that Mourning Doves are extremely monogamous and apparently males are secure enough in their masculinity to take on what most people consider female duties). As for me, I am grateful for not having to carry around the miserable guilt of being a bird killer; I begin each morning checking on the family; and look forward to the day the eggs finally hatch.