Usually, they hang out underneath one of the feeders, picking up seeds dropped by the messier visitors. Often, they sit atop the arbour in the front garden, sunning themselves and cooing softly to each other. Lately they’ve preferred this spot, near the hackberry tree, though just why they liked it was a mystery… until we spotted this guy:
See him? No? Let me zoom in a little…
This little guy has been busy, busy, busy! He flits around the backyard all day long, going from tree to tree, fence to fence, and feeder to feeder. Occasionally, he runs off to someone else’s yard, only to come racing back with wings a-flutter and voice a-whistling as he calls out his distinctive “chicka-dee-dee-dee!” His favourite perch seems to be our hackberry tree. The very same hackberry tree that holds the bird house K built for B.
He’s been such a busy bird because he’s got a family to feed. I haven’t managed to catch a photo of the family, but there’s a female sitting on her next inside the feeder, and she hasn’t left her post in days. She relies on her mate to bring her sustenance, and he has been very busy indeed keeping her fed.
He rarely goes inside, instead preferring to offer her food through the opening on the front of the bird house:
This is perhaps not the most efficient method for sharing food, but the mourning doves don’t seem to mind at all, no sirree! You see, the chickadees keep dropping choice morsels on the ground beneath the bird house. It’s like gourmet delivery for doves. No wonder they like it there.
B, meanwhile, is pleased as punch that the chickadees have moved in to her bird house. ‘Scuse me, her blue bird house, made just for her, by her very bestest brother. And K? K is walking around with his chest puffed out to here and telling anyone who’ll listen that he built a bird house so well that the birds moved right in the very next day.
Somehow, I see many more handmade bird houses in our future.