Wednesday, June 3, 2009



A robin family built their nest in a little crook of our deck cover a few weeks ago, about 5 feet from our back door. As I saw them start to bring in their building materials and begin construction in this spot, I was a little worried that it was an unsafe place for them to build. I thought about trying to thwart their efforts by removing the pieces they had brought and putting something in the way, but they were so diligent, bringing piece after piece of straw and grass to the precarious little spot, I just didn't have the heart to undo any of their work. And as the nest began to take shape, they would take turns wiggling and squishing their little bodies down into the pile of debris, making a nice, perfectly round indentation in the center.
I never saw them both together, but I am pretty sure there was a male and a female building the nest. The mama finally settled in and started spending long hours in that spot, becoming alarmed now and then by our comings and goings, but staying put. One day when she flew off briefly, I grabbed a ladder and stuck my camera way up high to see what was going on in the nest. What a happy feeling to look at the camera's screen and see that bright blue!

It's been a rough road for those little eggs -- sure, it's June, but we are not having a typical Colorado June. It's been chilly and ridiculously rainy, with freakish lightning and thunder. We've been getting the kind of rain that feels like Pacific Northwest weather. Days on end of rain. That poor little mama has been hunched down in that nest, completely drenched, spreading her wings out to shelter those babies of hers.

Today it finally stopped. I saw her fly up to the nest with something in her mouth and as I watched, a funny little pink beak popped up out of the nest. The babies have started to hatch. My girls are naming them -- one of them is Lightning McQueen. We still don't know how many there are -- at least two. Tonight I saw the mom and dad both sitting on the edge of the nest with worms in their mouths. Teamwork! I guess we will have a front-row seat to see how the babies do when they leap out of the nest. I will just have to keep the dog out of the way!