The Slum Lords of Montgomery County

Wherein Our Heroine Finds that Nature Intrudes Yet Again.

We have an $800 bird house.

I say this - not to brag, not to show off our vast wealth (ha!), not to keep up with the proverbial Joneses over in Potomac (home of multi-million-dollar McMansions) - but to illustrate an absurdity. Avid readers of WoT? (all three of you) may have noticed that John and I have a soft spot or four for animals. So, behold the $800 bird house:

The inverted tip of the bow is currently home to a family of Carolina Wrens. Note the actual bird house, a lovely, elegant structure which we had specifically provided for their use and enjoyment.

It sits only a foot or two from where they actually decided to build their twiggy little home. The wrens magisterially ignored its cozy enclosure, drainage holes and obvious intended purpose for a damp, uncertain future in the canoe. It's like saying, "No thanks, Donald - I prefer the basement to the penthouse." And so, we are involuntary slumlords.

I tried to take photos of the nest itself, and other than thoroughly irritating one of the parents (who sat in a tree and scolded me with his or her finest imitation of a crow), all I could come up with was this:

And that, admittedly is a lousy picture.

"So?" I hear some of you cry. "Evict the little squatters - feel no remorse, just do it!" Well, we did evict them earlier in the year - at least twice - when they had just started arranging twigs and bits of flotsam into the canoe. And then John stuffed wads of bubble-wrap in the bow and stern to serve as a sort of avian padlock-and-chain-link-fence complete with "These Premises Not for Occupation" sign. Then we removed the bubble-wrap when we took the canoe out the first time and it never went back, since we thought we were out of the nesting danger zone. Now there are four little eggs in that nest. And they grow up fast, and well... we can't bear the idea of having little peeping feathery things on our sappy consciences. So, we're going to have tenants for a bit.

We'll just have to listen to their songs in lieu of rent.

Posted: Monday - July 12, 2004 at 08:08 AM         | |