In May 2011, after four years of life on McNutt's Island, we moved to Montreal. This blog remains, though, as a (sort of) daily record of our time on the island, and a winding path for anyone who would like to meander about among its magical places. For additional perspectives and insights I recommend Greg's book, Island Year: Finding Nova Scotia (2010), and my Bowl of Light (2012). I'll continue to post once in a while. If you do want to read this blog, one option would be to begin at the beginning of it (which is, as we all know, in blog-world, at the end), and read forward, concluding with the most recent entry. It's a journal, really, so it does makes more sense if you read it that way. But, you know, read it any way you like.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

welcome, baby robins

This is the second summer I've been surprised by the baby robins. It's because they are almost the same size as their mommies and daddies by the time we realize what exactly we are seeing in the back orchard or the front yard. They're speckled brown on their breasts and backs, though, and they have a certain tentative quality about them. Often you see them just standing there, looking around vacantly, waiting to be fed. They don't seem to be entirely sure what this is all about. It's endearing.

Meanwhile the parent -- mother or father, I don't know which -- is nearby, lovingly digging up worms and hopping over and direct-delivering them into the mouth of the baby who doesn't look much like a baby. The "little" one follows its parent around, and makes the most remarkable sounds, like a tiny radio on the fritz, with all kinds of random screeches and static and buzzing. When there are two or three babies in the yard all hopping desperately after their mothers or fathers and going on like that you can hardly hear yourself think.
This one was making a huge racket yesterday afternoon, almost on the front porch. Its mother or father was half-way across the yard, so maybe it was feeling lost and anxious. Or maybe it was just yelling "I want my dinner!" Or "Wow, I've never seen so much grass!" I had to take the picture through the screen door and it isn't very clear. But I think you can see its speckles if you look hard, and you can see that, really, it doesn't have a clue.


Janet said...

I've been hearing the robin babies too, but haven't seen any yet. Perhaps after this soft rain we're having this morning they will come out.

Karen said...

Love your description, they remind me of teenagers who are saying "What? I have to do this MYSELF?"...

My post is about a robin's nest full of newly hatched we just found in a shrub right up against this old house. The shrub was only planted about four weeks ago!