Tuesday, May 05, 2009
Life in Fern Nook is busy. The hummers help to keep it so.
First there was one; he sat on the Mock Orange bush and
looked in the kitchen window waiting to be noticed so we
would drag a feeder out of the shed and fill it. In a day
or two the one turned into three. Then the group grew to
five; and they have now become seven. There will be more.
It takes awhile for them to all make the long journey.
The little guys are extremely entertaining. Of course the
bullies keep the show at top billing. Even when there were
just three, a bully rose to the top. Because of that, we
hiked out to the shed to pull out, dust off, and fill feeder
number two. That helped for a day or two. But with the
increase in numbers comes an increase in bullies.
We now have what I affectionately have named The Bully and
The Bully Indeed. The Bully guards the feeder on the left
(as you look out the door to the porch). He will keep five
other birds from eating. As any approach he will buzz at
them and shoo them away. Why all five can't gang up on him
at one time is beyond me. But he is just The Bully because
every so often he lets down his guard and you will see the
five able to swoop in for a little sugar water.
The Bully Indeed weaves quite another little drama. He acts
nonchalant, but beware, his guard is never down. Usually he
sits on the drain pipe. Sometimes he perches on the vine that
covers our bell. Occasionally he will even fly into the
Tulip Poplar that is 30 or 40 feet away. But he never rests.
His back might be turned to his feeder, but nothing escapes
his notice. At the slightest whim of interest from another
bird he is on the attack. No bird, ever, gets to feed from
him feeder but himself.
Sometimes I think I should go knock him over the head to
let the others have their share. I guess it would be nice
and sweet if they all got along; but it wouldn't be nearly
so entertaining, and it wouldn't be nearly so hummingbirdish.