Wednesday, May 26, 2004

nest building

This beautiful bird is quite endearing to watch. She has been building her nest for the past three days, and I have been helping her. At first I just put a few strands of leftover yarn out on the railing, which she readily accepted. When she used all of that, I dug around and found some more scraps. She used all of that too. I remembered reading that Baltimore Orioles like white string, so that was what I was supplying. But then I started to wonder about if she could tell the difference, and that was what started my experiment. I proceeded to place different types of fiber lined up on the railing. Some were cotton, some were flax, some wool, some angora, some llama, in short, I placed little strands of past fibers that I have spun. I had adorned the deck railing with many colors and textures of yarns for her to choose from. Now I just had to wait. When she flew down to the railing she seemed hesitant, chittering that warning call they make. Then she took a stroll..hopping from one yarn to the next...picking some up in her beak, then dropping it. It was really very funny. She reminded me of the way I feel when I shop for yarn! Very choosy, picking up one, then the other, then back to the first. I was very happy when she picked up some of the navy blue flax (ah ha! she went with a color instead of the white!) I spent way to much time watching her, but the experiment proved that she would eventually accept each and every piece of fiber I put out there! Now if I can only find the nest..but she flies way out of view into the tree tops, and down the river. She did not come for more fiber today, as the pieces I put out this morning are still on the railing, so I imagine the building is finished and she will start laying soon.

I am still working on the lace socks. I have turned the heel (had to have complete silence and full concentration for that one) and it has formed a very unusual gusset, unlike any other sock I have made before. At this point, I have memorized the 7 rows of pattern, so the next sock should be easier because I will not have to keep checking the book to see what comes next. This afternoon I went to spinning group and finished spinning all of the Targhee. Grace was there and mentioned that Fred has made some more spinning wheel threading hooks for the antique wheels out of the exotic woods. He does beautiful work, and this time they are selling them on the house cleaning pages. The library is gearing up for a big book sale this weekend, so I had to buy a few more goodies for my shelf at home...including a great wildflower id book.

1 comment:

Cindy said...

What a wonderful picture! I would have been captivated too, in tempting the bird with fiber bits, and then watching. It amazes me sometimes just how close we do live to other creatures, if we just watch.

We have bluebird boxes, and this year a bird new to us used them. We saw the bird sitting on the wire by the box, and had to get the binoculars to see it closely. Turned out to be a tree swallow. Looks slightly larger than our barn swallows, and has very different but distinctive coloration. That afternoon we went by the box and heard the babies chirping. They babies fledged several days later, so they were pretty old by the time we discovered the nest.

Also another surprise visit by a bird this spring. A large bird was walking down our lane. When we got the binoculars to check it out, it turned out to be a ring necked pheasant. I have never seen one of those in this area before this spring.


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