"Language, as well as the faculty of speech, was the immediate gift of God." ~ Noah Webster

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Baby Killdeer Update

Last night as I got ready for bed, I went to the window, to take one last look at the moon, beautiful and full. As I stood there looking out my bedroom window, I heard the call of what I believe was the mama killdeer. It was the steady cry that I had been hearing all spring, when she would call her babies to come if a possibility of danger approached. I thought it strange to hear her at that time of night and it concerned me a bit. I lay in bed, unable to sleep as I listened to the steady chirp of Mama. It continued for the longest time and I found myself praying for those little babies and their mama as I drifted off to sleep.

When I woke this morning, the first thing I did, was run out to the pasture to let Skeeter out and check to see if Mama and her babies were still in Skeeter’s field, which has been their home for several weeks. I knew in a moment from the silence of the morning that they were gone.

I didn’t know whether to be relieved or worried. I suspected the previous night call had something to do with it. Either she was mourning the loss of her little ones, or she was calling them to a hopefully safer location. Either way, I missed the presence of the little birds.

Later this afternoon, as I was nursing my dangerously sick garden, I heard the killdeer’s call. Sure enough, she was further out in the hay pasture, now; and though I couldn’t see her or her babies I was somehow convinced they must all be there. I continued to work in my garden listening to what had become the familiar warning call of the mama killdeer; and pretty soon, I heard the caw, caw, caw of a crow.  I looked up to the blue, summer sky, where he was circling above the pasture; and I was sure he was after my baby killdeer. As I continued to watch, there also appeared a red tail hawk. Oh boy, no wonder mama moved her babies. I was fascinated though, when I realized these two were in battle. I supposed they were battling over those babies that they both knew were there below trying to hide amidst the tall, green, Timothy Hay. The raptors dove at one another, and flogged each other with their wings, when pretty soon another crow came for the purpose of joining in battle, it seemed. Then even further in the sky, I observed what appeared by his flight to be another hawk. The hawk remained silent as he battled, but the crows continued their caw. There were four birds now and I was surprised that the crows were able to maintain strong through out this little skirmish. I would have thought the hawks could have easily overpowered or scared away the crows. It didn’t take long however before each set of birds flew off in separate directions.

It was fun to watch; but what I liked even better was the fact that this battle between these strong, aggressive birds of prey probably kept my baby killdeers safe for a while longer as they diligently strive to survive.

1 comment:

  1. Update: 5 Killdeer came back to Skeeter's pasture yesterday and today, when I let Skeeter's water overflow his trough. They played in the water and stayed in the pasture for the afternoon. I believe it was the mama and her 4 babies, though they were almost all the same size by this time. So fun to see!!!