Daily Prompt: Plop

The Daily Prompt was unusual but I gave it a shot anyway.  My offering for “Plop”.

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This old guy waits patiently for my husband to come in from fishing

As the leftover bait plopped into the water, the pelicans fought to be the first to snatch it up.  You would think they hadn’t been trolling for fish all day long the way they knock each other out of the way to be first.  I watched as the winner greedily snatched the bait and marveled as it seemed to threaten to burst through the elastic looking pouch under his bill.  God’s creatures never cease to amaze me and they always remind me of His sense of humor.

I walked barefoot over to my favorite chair; the one I have sat and watched what I call “my” cardinals and mockingbird in for a couple of years now.  The thing is… I haven’t seen any of them in months.  The only birds I see frequently besides the water birds are crows and doves.  The big black crows drive me nuts with their incessant cawing as they eat the stale bread a neighbor throws out for them daily.  Lately, the doves are the lone visitors to my bird feeder and they are extremely skittish.

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My friend said that she caught a snake eating a cardinal under her bird feeder the other day and so I mentioned this to my husband.  He said, “Oh yeah, I’ve seen that rat snake hiding in the shrub right by the feeder.  He blends right in”.  I’m aghast that he knew this was going on and didn’t do something about it!  He could have run the snake off or something, right?!?

In light of this disturbing news, I googled it and lo and behold, feeders do often attract snakes which makes sense now that I think about it.  Now I have a decision to make.  Do I continue to provide seed and hope the birds are stealthy enough to avoid Mr. Rat Snake or do I remove the feeders entirely for fear of unintentionally luring the poor birds to their death?  The very shrub the evil thing likes to hide in will soon be sprouting berries that are particularly loved by the mockingbirds.  If the same mockingbird visits that did last year, he was mean and territorial.  Maybe he will run the snake off to another yard.

I’ve spent hours in my chair, enjoying the birds while I spend time with Jesus and bask in the sunshine or watch the sunset.  This will be a difficult change for me.  I’m saddened even thinking about removing the feeder and tossing the rest of the seed out in the open.   Maybe someone has an idea that will save the day.

 

Lessons from a mockingbird

You may have read some of my other posts where I talk about how God always teaches me little lessons or shows me things if I just pay attention to His creation.

My husband and I, now that we are getting older, love to watch the various birds that frequent our back yard.  Since he is a fishing guide, the pelicans follow him home, but his favorite is a little blue heron that comes to visit every afternoon.  If the little guy is fortunate, he gets scraps as the fish get cleaned.

My preference though are the cardinals.  Since they live here year round, I always keep food in their feeder.  There are several pairs that live in the dense mangroves across the creek from us, so you can find them almost any time of day near the feeder in the winter and spring.  In summer, it seems like they are a little more elusive.  I am sure the intense heat has something to do with that.

Recently, I have become acquainted with (the best I can anyway) with a fat little mockingbird.  She sits on our fence or atop the stalks of red berries on our Christmas palm tree.  The photo below only shows one stalk and there are currently four on this tree and two on the tree in our front yard.  My point being, she has plenty.

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She pecks at the berries until one falls to the ground and then she quickly grabs it and runs into a more sheltered area with it.  She constantly watches for other birds and chases mostly black birds and mourning doves away all day long.  They aren’t allowed to land within about a five foot perimeter of “her” tree.  Don’t tell me it isn’t fun to bird watch, although my youngest teases me about the pleasure I derive from my birds.

Anyway, to get to my lesson.  The other day, as you can see in the video above, she had her berry and was enjoying a feast.  If you look closely you can see a cardinal hiding in the bush behind her and a black bird walks by behind it.  The cardinal and the black bird are merely after the bird feeder which is to the left of the greedy little mockingbird.  They do not appear to be remotely interested in her berries and they don’t eat them when she isn’t around.

However, you can see in the video at the very end, she chases them away.  She wastes effort getting stressed, and chasing them away from what is hers.  She covets her berry and thinks everyone wants what she has.  She misinterprets their motive and gets it all wrong.  Can you see the lesson?  Aren’t we like that sometimes?  We think everyone wants what is ours and we get in defensive mode and get our blood pressure up for naught.  And for what?  There were enough berries for everyone and no one else was interested in them anyway.

I love God’s little lessons in nature and I love to watch His glorious creatures living out their roles in His magnificent creation.

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Container

The Weekly Photo Challenge was to share a container you find interesting.  I love to keep this container (feeder) filled with black oil sunflower seeds.  My husband and I enjoy a “couple” of cardinals that frequent our backyard.

Cardinal in backyard

Cardinal visit

Weekly Photo Challenge: Color

Today when I got the email for the weekly photo challenge, it was pouring down rain, a dark and dreary day. At first, I thought I would have to use all old pictures because I really wanted to use pictures representing the magnificent color in God’s creation. I used a couple of older ones, but most of these are from today, after a cleansing rain drenched the plants outside.

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