The Third-Storey Condo

Each spring, do you find you keep one ear open to hear the first robin’s song? Ah-h-h-h . . . it’s spring!

I was delighted to see a robin splashing about in the front yard’s birdbath. Afterwards, it flew into the nearby pear tree to dry off and preen its feathers.

What we didn’t observe was the quiet construction in the backyard of a third storey on the robin’s nest of previous years . . . dobbing on a bit more mud and working in tiny twigs into its round walls. The nest is hidden partway from the top of a cedar tree below our bedroom window, conveniently sheltered from rain by the overhead eaves.

When we transplanted hostas in the flowerbed surrounding the cedar, mother robin flew off the nest and let us know we were intruders, pesky intruders! I talked to her: “Don’t worry, Mother Robin. We’ll soon be done.” I’m sure she knows my voice, hearing it from the bedroom windows above her abode.

My husband witnessed the parents ferociously shoo off a grey squirrel recently who was trying to get a drink at “their” rock well. They swooped down close enough to peck its eyes out, uttering deafening screeches! Lloyd almost felt sorry for the thirsty old squirrel.

Between the robins and the chickadees whose nursery is in a gourd among the lilacs, the old walnut tree should be pretty healthy this year, judging from the birds’ non-stop forays among its branches to fetch bugs, beetles and wiggly things for their hatchlings.

The other day when we took Sparkle for a walk in Old Doon, a robin serenaded us from the treetops. Turn your sound on and enjoy the cheery repertoire of the robin  here.