Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

Our robins

Posted by Kathy G on 6/27/02 at 13:50 (088604)

This is kind of neat, at least to me. We have a robin who builds her nest on a support beam underneath our deck. Each year, for the last six years, she's come back. Or maybe it's another robin - they all look the same to me! Anyway, for fear of contaminating the nest so she'd abandon it, we never get very close to it but we can see it through the space between the boards of the deck. Each year, she has two 'litters'. This year, she's been real skittish because a neighborhood cat discovered her and he's always prowling under the deck. She had one group of four babies and the second group of four are getting ready to leave the nest. Today, I went out on the deck to tie up some of our tomato plants and Mother Robin was sitting on the railing, twittering away. That's kind of unusual because she usually doesn't get that close to us. Then I glanced down, and one of the babies was walking around the deck! She was so cute! She kept going over to the edge of the deck like she was going to fly off, but she always lost her nerve. I came into the house so I wouldn't make her nervous. When I looked out at the deck later, she was gone. Then I went down into the back yard from where I can see the nest, although from a distance. She was perched on the edge of the beam. Now you have to understand, I have never been a bird lover, in fact, because we used to feed the seagulls when I was a kid and they'd all flock toward us, I was afraid of birds for years. We had a bird feeder for a number of years and I did enjoy watching them through the window but I've never been what one could consider a bird-watcher. But we had been curious as to what the baby birds looked like and my husband is at work, so I ran back into the house and got the camera and I was out there taking pictures so that I can show them to him when he comes home. If anybody who knew me well had seen me, they'd have been hysterical with laughter at the idea of me taking pictures of a bird!

Well, then I went down to the basement, which is a walk-in and has big windows and I can't believe it but I got a stool and sat there watching this little bird keep going over to the edge of the beam, flapping her wings like she was going to take off, and then just standing there! Talk about a bird who's not ready to leave the nest! It's been at least an hour and she's still there. By the way, I refer to her as 'she' because she reminds me of my daughter who was always cautious to try anything new. I keep going back downstairs to check. I knew I was really losing it when I was saying, out loud, 'Go on; you can do it.' I'm supposed to be vacuuming and dusting the house and I'm watching a bird! I think I have too much time on my hands!

Re: Our robins

Necee on 6/27/02 at 14:31 (088606)

I loved reading your post Kathy!!
I have enjoyed birds for many years now, although I wouldn't call myself an avid birdwatcher, I do stop and notice when I see birds in our yard. I keep several birdfeeders and hummingbird feeders out for them all the time.
Over the years I too have filmed the babies leaving the nest, watching for hours as they try their best to get the nerve to attempt flying. We had a House Wren build a nest on our back deck, she built it right outside my kitchen window, so I had a 'birds eye view'! The Cardinals are everywhere, I noticed just yesterday that they have built a nest in a shrub right beside our backyard gate, there are 4 eggs, so in about 2 weeks we should see babies emerge from their cozy little home.

I have rescued several Morning Doves over the past few years, 2 of which I hand feed and raised, they thought I was their momma!! They would fly up and perch on my shoulder. I named one of them Boomer, short for boomerang because when it was very young it got out of its cage and flew up into the neighbors tree, I tried my best to get it back, and it wasn't till the next morning that while I was outside on the deck it flew down from that tree and landed on my head!! After that, she never flew away again.

I also hand fed a Cardinal that fell from a tree and I couldn't find its momma. Her name was 'Tinker', she was the sweetest thing, she would flutter her little wings and make the cutest little 'tinking' sound whenever she saw me.

At our cabin in the country, we have some crows but they are very distructive!! I have feeders there too, and one day a pair of crows came and now they won't leave!! They have pecked at the windows, and pecked the chinking out from between the logs on the cabin. They are about to drive me crazy, pooping on everything and flying away with anything that shines in their beeks!! We also have Eastern Bluebirds there, they are very beautiful birds, and like to nest low to the ground, so we built several Bluebird nest boxes and attached them to our fence posts.

So Kathy, you aren't crazy for spending your day watching birds, I've been there and done that myself!! Taking the time to stop and smell the roses...thats what lifes all about.

Happy trails to you.....

Necee

Re: Our robins

wendyn on 6/27/02 at 16:25 (088617)

Kathy, I never watched birds until about 6 years ago when we had baby robins hanging around our house. I too cannot believe how much time I can spend watching them.

I've seen the momma birds act the way you describe, I think they do that to divert your attention away from the baby. One year I watched the little babies fly into walls, crash land - it was a riot (since they didn't seem to get hurt)

You'll be hooked forever now!

Re: Our robins

Suzanne D on 6/27/02 at 17:55 (088623)

That's a marvelous story, Kathy! It made me think of two things: a little book my first graders like called ARE YOU MY MOTHER? in which a baby bird hatches out while Mama is away and goes looking for his mother, asking every creature along the way 'Are you my mother?'. The children think it is funny.

It also made me think of an old song we sing at church sometimes with the words, 'His Eye is on the Sparrow, and I know He watches me.'

Happy bird watching!

Suzanne :-)

Re: Our robins

john h on 6/28/02 at 09:24 (088664)

Kathy: I have three bird feeders and two bird baths in my back yard. On occasion I have had a chickadee land in my hand when I would hold it out with seed. We have a wide variety of birds including dove,three types of woodpeckers, bluejays, robbins, yellow wrens (in season), quail, an occasional blue bird, many red birds, brown thrashers and once a pilated woodpecker which is as big as a chicken. He was pecking on the house one time and it was like a jack hammer (these are sort of rare).

Every year I manage to save a few babies when they first are pushed out of the nest. Last week one was chirping in the yard (baby blue jay) and my cat was on the way. I got there first and placed him in a bush outside my yard with his mama hot on my trail.

Many years ago I was sitting on my deck and a robbin landed on my head.It scared me at first then he jumped down on the arm of the chair. I called for my wife to bring some food and he eat a lot. For the next few days he stayed arond always coming up to me when I went outside. I thought I had some sort of bird magic. Then one day a neighbor hood kid saw me with the robbin and said that is Mr. Robbin! He had been raised by one of the kids in the neighborhood and then let go. No magic!

Re: Our robins

john h on 6/28/02 at 09:25 (088665)

Are not girls in England referred to as Birds?

Re: Our robins

Kathy G on 6/28/02 at 09:46 (088670)

That's funny, John. And you thought you were like the Birdman of Alcatraz! Did you ever see that movie with Clint Eastwood? It was pretty good.

When we had feeders, I was amazed at the variety of birds we got. We had a couple of pairs of cardinals that were beautiful. Some of the birds we got were not welcome, like the Starlings and the Cowbirds. My daughter was around 9 at the time and I used to tell her that we could tell that they were Cowbirds because they wore teeny, tiny boots!

We finally got rid of the feeder because it was right outside the kitchen window and I got tired of getting up in the morning and seeing two or three ugly squirrels eating all the birdseed. We talk about putting a few feeders up again and relocating them. They might not be so easy to see from the house but maybe they won't feed just squirrels!

Oh, and about the starlings. We only had a few at the feeder and they were no big deal but then about five years ago, we got unbelievable numbers of them. We have tall pines behind our house as do most of our neightbors. The starlings would arrive around 6 or 7pm and take up residence in the trees for the night and you could hear them rustling the leaves and making noise and it was downright disturbing! A lot of us put out those owl decoys in hopes of warding them off but they came back every year for about 3 years in a row. Then, they just stopped coming. Man, was I glad. They used to stay about 4 weeks, I think. I just hated them; they'd come when I was working out in the yard and just descend upon us. I felt like I was in the movie, 'The Birds', and I didn't like it one bit!

Re: Our robins

Julie on 6/28/02 at 09:53 (088671)

Only by the gross, John.

Re: Our robins

john h on 6/28/02 at 18:58 (088711)

I guessed you knew the answer to that Julie. Seems like I remember the Beetles using that term. Is it in common use now?

Re: Our robins

Necee on 6/27/02 at 14:31 (088606)

I loved reading your post Kathy!!
I have enjoyed birds for many years now, although I wouldn't call myself an avid birdwatcher, I do stop and notice when I see birds in our yard. I keep several birdfeeders and hummingbird feeders out for them all the time.
Over the years I too have filmed the babies leaving the nest, watching for hours as they try their best to get the nerve to attempt flying. We had a House Wren build a nest on our back deck, she built it right outside my kitchen window, so I had a 'birds eye view'! The Cardinals are everywhere, I noticed just yesterday that they have built a nest in a shrub right beside our backyard gate, there are 4 eggs, so in about 2 weeks we should see babies emerge from their cozy little home.

I have rescued several Morning Doves over the past few years, 2 of which I hand feed and raised, they thought I was their momma!! They would fly up and perch on my shoulder. I named one of them Boomer, short for boomerang because when it was very young it got out of its cage and flew up into the neighbors tree, I tried my best to get it back, and it wasn't till the next morning that while I was outside on the deck it flew down from that tree and landed on my head!! After that, she never flew away again.

I also hand fed a Cardinal that fell from a tree and I couldn't find its momma. Her name was 'Tinker', she was the sweetest thing, she would flutter her little wings and make the cutest little 'tinking' sound whenever she saw me.

At our cabin in the country, we have some crows but they are very distructive!! I have feeders there too, and one day a pair of crows came and now they won't leave!! They have pecked at the windows, and pecked the chinking out from between the logs on the cabin. They are about to drive me crazy, pooping on everything and flying away with anything that shines in their beeks!! We also have Eastern Bluebirds there, they are very beautiful birds, and like to nest low to the ground, so we built several Bluebird nest boxes and attached them to our fence posts.

So Kathy, you aren't crazy for spending your day watching birds, I've been there and done that myself!! Taking the time to stop and smell the roses...thats what lifes all about.

Happy trails to you.....

Necee

Re: Our robins

wendyn on 6/27/02 at 16:25 (088617)

Kathy, I never watched birds until about 6 years ago when we had baby robins hanging around our house. I too cannot believe how much time I can spend watching them.

I've seen the momma birds act the way you describe, I think they do that to divert your attention away from the baby. One year I watched the little babies fly into walls, crash land - it was a riot (since they didn't seem to get hurt)

You'll be hooked forever now!

Re: Our robins

Suzanne D on 6/27/02 at 17:55 (088623)

That's a marvelous story, Kathy! It made me think of two things: a little book my first graders like called ARE YOU MY MOTHER? in which a baby bird hatches out while Mama is away and goes looking for his mother, asking every creature along the way 'Are you my mother?'. The children think it is funny.

It also made me think of an old song we sing at church sometimes with the words, 'His Eye is on the Sparrow, and I know He watches me.'

Happy bird watching!

Suzanne :-)

Re: Our robins

john h on 6/28/02 at 09:24 (088664)

Kathy: I have three bird feeders and two bird baths in my back yard. On occasion I have had a chickadee land in my hand when I would hold it out with seed. We have a wide variety of birds including dove,three types of woodpeckers, bluejays, robbins, yellow wrens (in season), quail, an occasional blue bird, many red birds, brown thrashers and once a pilated woodpecker which is as big as a chicken. He was pecking on the house one time and it was like a jack hammer (these are sort of rare).

Every year I manage to save a few babies when they first are pushed out of the nest. Last week one was chirping in the yard (baby blue jay) and my cat was on the way. I got there first and placed him in a bush outside my yard with his mama hot on my trail.

Many years ago I was sitting on my deck and a robbin landed on my head.It scared me at first then he jumped down on the arm of the chair. I called for my wife to bring some food and he eat a lot. For the next few days he stayed arond always coming up to me when I went outside. I thought I had some sort of bird magic. Then one day a neighbor hood kid saw me with the robbin and said that is Mr. Robbin! He had been raised by one of the kids in the neighborhood and then let go. No magic!

Re: Our robins

john h on 6/28/02 at 09:25 (088665)

Are not girls in England referred to as Birds?

Re: Our robins

Kathy G on 6/28/02 at 09:46 (088670)

That's funny, John. And you thought you were like the Birdman of Alcatraz! Did you ever see that movie with Clint Eastwood? It was pretty good.

When we had feeders, I was amazed at the variety of birds we got. We had a couple of pairs of cardinals that were beautiful. Some of the birds we got were not welcome, like the Starlings and the Cowbirds. My daughter was around 9 at the time and I used to tell her that we could tell that they were Cowbirds because they wore teeny, tiny boots!

We finally got rid of the feeder because it was right outside the kitchen window and I got tired of getting up in the morning and seeing two or three ugly squirrels eating all the birdseed. We talk about putting a few feeders up again and relocating them. They might not be so easy to see from the house but maybe they won't feed just squirrels!

Oh, and about the starlings. We only had a few at the feeder and they were no big deal but then about five years ago, we got unbelievable numbers of them. We have tall pines behind our house as do most of our neightbors. The starlings would arrive around 6 or 7pm and take up residence in the trees for the night and you could hear them rustling the leaves and making noise and it was downright disturbing! A lot of us put out those owl decoys in hopes of warding them off but they came back every year for about 3 years in a row. Then, they just stopped coming. Man, was I glad. They used to stay about 4 weeks, I think. I just hated them; they'd come when I was working out in the yard and just descend upon us. I felt like I was in the movie, 'The Birds', and I didn't like it one bit!

Re: Our robins

Julie on 6/28/02 at 09:53 (088671)

Only by the gross, John.

Re: Our robins

john h on 6/28/02 at 18:58 (088711)

I guessed you knew the answer to that Julie. Seems like I remember the Beetles using that term. Is it in common use now?