Outdoors when not writing …
May 31, 2009 § 13 Comments
Birdfeeder cafe takes care of several species, as well as entertainment!
Of course it all depends on time of day but there is often “rush hour” at the feeder, and the environs just below it. It turns into Beatrix Potter meets Disney. No, really! Early in the morning and then again around 6 p.m.
You’d think I have something better to do, but weekly, after 50 hours in corporate offices , 14 hours in commuting, no less than 7 hours in our own kitchen, 54 hours sleeping and at least 15 hours alone at laptop writing, is there something better than observing the ecosystems, the critters who inspire more than a get-out-of-here-you-rascally-rascal response? anything better than figuring how they live?
Here is Miss Dove….there are several of her ilk living in the red bushes on the far side of our house, yet she is the most curious, the most round and grey and plump and sweet.
and watches the feeding circus beneath her….
This is String, one of last year’s broods who made it through the winter. He’s skinny and lithe and matches the colors of the earth remarkably, yet his fur changes in the changing light…
He loves eating the sunflowers that sprout below the feeder. It’s a tidy system. Whatever the birds drop, sprouts. Whatever sprouts, the rabbits will eat. Whatever seeds lie “unsprouted,” the squirrels adore.
String is always blessedly hungry. He visits alone, though I’m sure he reports back to the Hollow.
And those ears! Nearly transparent in the sunlight. He’s listening to Archie, who is approaching.
And here is Archie. (Nutkin is a far better name but the venerable Miss Potter already took that name for her little character and I certainly respect that.) Archie is nervous of course, patrols the edges of the feeder garden and then gets under the greenery for cover while he scratches at the dirt and sucks down every seed he can find or “pouch.” He fell in the pool last week as he was dashing away but hale fellow that he is, he swam the width of the pool and was so shot with adrenaline, he managed to scramble up the slippery side of it and onto the patio, shook himself and dashed through the fence into the Bamboo Forest. We keep an eye on him and we have the pool skimmer net ready in case of having to scoop him or any of his kin from the water.
OK, no, I cannot distinguish Archie from the other three squirrels who tear ass through the trees along the back of the property. I suspect with a bit of study, I likely could. Possbily by their tails, which are scrubby looking and not nearly as bushy as the red squirrels’ tails.
And here is Huck, the 15-year-old beagle.
He is not even outdoors. He has better things to do, though he’s a rabbit dog by breed. And one of those things he has to do is lie in the sun. This, he explains, is a nearly full time job. But it has to be the sun that pours through the dining room windows. (Note the tongue and the slightly distrubed expression. Nothing is more annoying to beagles in his position than paparazzi!)