Saturday, May 31, 2008

A Zoo, Sort Of

I'm a bit mad at myself today. I'm back from Chicago (had a LOVELY time!), but just not in the groove. Too relaxed, perhaps? I've had these really great photo opportunities recently, and I just wasn't fast enough to get good pictures! We have some sort of bird's nest outside our back door, pasted up in a corner under our eaves. At first you could see Mama Bird building her nest on top of another, older one. Not too much later you could hear little peeps coming from it, as long as you didn't step out the door. They were very obedient little birds and were completely silent when they saw danger. A little later you could look at them peeking over the edge of the nest, waiting to be fed, quietly watching us go about our business. Yesterday, they were gone, and there was a black rat snake on the ground four feet long to entertain us instead. The four baby birds were in our front yard, lined up on a tree branch, getting their flying lessons, and just in time, for those black snakes are really good climbers. I know, I looked it up online! My daughter saw the snake, and we all ran out to look at it, while I was yelling at them to, “Go back inside till I figure out what kind of snake it is!” I Googled Black Snake and found a picture that looked just like the one we saw: a shiny black snake, all kinked up, perfectly still. My kids wanted to kill it. I decided not... we've found plenty of evidence of rodents and I decided a little bit of natural predation was a good thing. Later that day, we heard five gunshots come from the neighbor's hen house. I was disturbed at the gunshots. After all, any kind of killing disturbs a woman like me. The three neighbor men had found two black snakes munching their eggs, and, well, when it comes to food, a man must protect his interests above the serpent's, naturally. One day I believe the lion will lie down with the lamb, but not yet!

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