What a wonderment it is to find a bird nest. Usually they are found in the fall, after the leaves have been blown off trees and all that is left if an empty nest with a ring of bird poo around the rim from the little birdies that were hatched, fed and pooed their way to first flight through to soaring solo never to come back to that first nest again. Well that is the way it is supposed to happen. But what of the eggs, that I call the “too soon to exit” eggs?
The too soon to exit eggs are plentiful in our yard. Seems there are some birds that just get ahead of themselves and spit out eggs in flight. Yes, I didn’t think it could happen either. But walking under trees and power lines and clothes lines and around poles I have found these eggs in several stages of egg-ery. They are sometimes intact. Fully formed and not a crack in the shell. I wonder if I could somehow incubate them and get a bird. Then of course I realize that the egg is cold and not knowing a thing about birds leads me to feed the eggs to my dogs or cats which they take and gobble up shell and all. Kind of yucky, but the circle of life and all that…
Then there are the ones that are only half there. Not quite empty with the shell left in two or more pieces. Now here is where it gets interesting to me. Is the bird just sitting on a post or wire and looking for the next twig or feather to, yes, feather her nest when she gets this pre nest done urge and out pops an egg? Does that bird try to gather up the egg, which she cannot do since she has no thumbs? Is she even aware that the egg has left the building? Or does she just go about her nest building knowing that it will be filled with other eggs and then little birds that will poo around the ring of her home then one day solo and fly away? Again doing that circle of life thingy.
Many if not all of the eggs I find in my yard are from what I call poo birds. They are I think sparrows and black birds. They eat what I am sure is an enormous amount of bugs that fill the air, but they also have become quite enamored with the cat food dish. Which leads them to hang around the cat food dish and poo after they dine on delectable fish and chicken flavored morsels. It’s not that I am opposed to the birds, but now I have discovered that ring necked doves have moved into the area and the splatters of poo have become larger and more pronounced. I have come to hide the cat food dish inside of a three sided shelter to deter the doves and still feed the cats. But for some unexplained reason the poo birds and the doves still like to hang around the area splattering the deck, chairs and walk ways. So….
I have rallied the cats so to speak. Put them on notice hoping that they will thin the herd of poo birds. Speaking in hushed tones I say, “Go get ‘em kitty,” when a bird lands close. Well as you can imagine, “Go get ‘em kitty”, has absolutely no effect. Cats don’t like, I have found, black birds or any type of poo birds. The only birds my cats go after are the cute little yellow finches that twitter in the trees hopping from one limb to the next without so much as doing any pooing that I have ever seen. I have gone so far as to catch a cat, with a little yellow bird still alive, and take the little thing out of the cats mouth saying, “Drop it, drop it!” The cat looked at me and I just know he was thinking, “What? Really? Go get your own bird you crazy woman!”
I have come to enjoy the remarkable happenings in our yard. Bugs, birds, bombs of poo and all. I am just very glad there are no pterodactyls spitting out “too soon to exit” eggs. Just how hard would a pterodactyl egg be? Well, considering it would be fossilized it would be hard, hard as a rock—get it? Yeouch that would be a bong on the head and a mess in the yard! Oh, by the way, trust me that is how pterodactyl is spelled I had to google it. I would have spelled it terradactyl and even with a dictionary I would have never found it. Who started it with a “p”?!
Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Her book ITY BITS can be found on Kindle. Share your thoughts and opinions with her at firstname.lastname@example.org.