July seems like a strange month for baby wildlife to be cropping up everywhere, but that’s what’s happening. Every year it seems like something or other decides to nest on our farm. Usually it’s killdeer birds, and for months we have the parents flopping around our yard pretending to have broken wings and doing a terrible job at hiding their nest. Their main criteria for a nesting site seems to be “Where are my eggs most likely to be crushed/drowned/eaten?” It’s a wonder the species survives.
Last year we had a pair of red-tailed hawks nest in our back treeline, which was much more interesting.
This year, there are no hawks or killdeer, but a pair of swallows tried to nest on our porch. I was happy that we seemed to have dissuaded them from that plan, until I realized they’d decided to nest in the Clubhouse instead. Right over the water tub. Yay. I would have knocked it down if they’d still been building, but I didn’t notice they were there until the mama bird was already sitting in the nest, so I let them be.
Unfortunately Watcher found them this morning, and being a collie he tried to bring them in the house where they’d be dry and safe. At least I assume that’s what he was trying to do, since he was being so very gentle and careful he certainly wasn’t trying to kill them.
I heard squealing through the screen door and ran outside just as Watcher got to the porch steps carrying one of the babies. He put it down when I yelled at him and did the “fix it, Mommy!” worried-collie-dance. Despite its ride in Watcher’s mouth, it wasn’t the slightest bit hurt. I wasn’t sure if my scent would make the mama reject it, but I couldn’t leave it sitting right off the porch steps so I chased Watcher into the house and put the little rabbit back in the nest. It nestled right down with its siblings and stopped crying right away.
I saw mama bunny near the nest a few minutes later, so hopefully the disturbance didn’t make her abandon them. Maybe she’ll figure out this isn’t the best neighborhood to raise her kids in and move them somewhere else, where well-meaning collie pups can’t get to them.
“You Shall Not Pass! At least not until you play with me!”
The baby collie has started leaving his toys in a pile just outside the basement door where I’ll be sure to
trip on them see them when I’m on my way to the sheep. I think he hopes I’ll forget about the sheep and play with him instead. Maybe it’s the canine version of leaving a “Santa” wish list outside his parents’ door?
The baby sheep aren’t really babies anymore, even though they still think they are. Sigh. Oh well, fortunately my sheep are still cute even grown up. And there’ll be more babies next year.