Thursday, July 9, 2015
I might have mentioned that a kildeer made a nest in the gravel of the driveway to the shop.
I had seen her hanging around and on May 30, I noticed she had laid two eggs.
The next day there were three,
and the next day, four.
I consulted the All Knowing Oracle and found out that the eggs would take 22 – 24 days to hatch. The little kildeer mom endured long days of hot sun and torrential rain and high winds from tropical storm Bill which blew in June 16th.
It took a few days longer than 24 but they did all hatch. Thursday evening the 25th, no babies. Friday morning, three babies.
By Friday evening, all four eggs had hatched. Mom jumped up and ran in one direction and the babies ran in the other. Then she got nervous that I was between her and the babies and moved over to call to them.
Unlike babies born into nests in trees, the kildeer are born fully feathered with long strong legs and they are up and running within hours. They are so cute, like little mini-mes running and bobbing and peeping. I had to use my zoom to get these pictures. The fourth egg laid was the last baby hatched and while it did eventually get up and move off as I was taking pictures, it only ventured about 6' from the nest on weak legs.
Saturday morning they were nowhere to be found.
The mississippi kites summer over here and the other day I saw one fly into the top of the tallow tree in the Little Back Yard where she has a nest.
Today I was checking on it and there is a fuzzy white chick sitting up keeping a watchful eye out for mom and dad.
Earlier today, Emma the cat wanted out into the Little Back Yard and soon a pair of cardinals were chirping and agitated. I looked up to see a fledging in the shrub behind the teacup.
OK, Miss Emma. Back in you go. She made a big show of sharpening her claws on a tree root that emerges from the ground before she consented to be picked up and carried in.