Here’s a re-post from this time last year, and the chickadees are equally busy this year.
Also, a reminder, if you haven’t read it already, don’t miss the gripping sequel to yesterday’s post: Flicker Saga Part Two
The Chickadee Edition
On your marks, get set, go.
As soon as the plum blossoms flower on our street it’s the signal for serious nesting building to start. From the biggest to the tiniest birds, the clock is ticking.
With great good luck, we have a pair of chickadees, including my special buddy, Braveheart (with the teardrop marking) building a nest in the ornamental plum tree by our house.
When I feel too busy, I just go out and watch these two working ceaselessly for a few minutes. Their level of dedication to the job at hand is pretty inspiring.
Phase One: expanding the existing small tree cavity. The original hole was clearly not spacious enough for their interior design ambitions, so remodelling was undertaken with zeal.
With those tiny beaks, you can imagine how many trips it took do the job. For about a week, the pair of them took turns flying in and out, hundreds of times a day, with their micro-loads of wood chips.
Even when they stopped for a break, you could see the sawdust stuck to their hardworking little faces.
I imagine it was a pretty dry and uncomfortable job, chewing and spitting out wood for days on end. The photo below catches one of our intrepid builders coughing up a bit of sawdust. I felt as if I should offer them each a very tiny beer, but I guess they made do with the water in the bird bath.
It’s hard to say if they finally decided the space was big enough, or they just couldn’t stand any more digging …
… but one day efforts suddenly switched from digging to interior design.
I’m not sure what’s going on in there now. I try not to spend too much time hanging around in case I attract unwanted predatory attention, but I’ll keep you posted on developments.
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