Sorry, Mama Robin

I cut the firewood we use to supplement heating our house. Each year, I drop 15 or 20 trees, mostly soft maple and cherry, let them dry on the ground during the summer and fall, and then the following year, cut them up, haul them in, split them by hand, stack them, re-stack them when the pile falls over …. etc. It’s a Vermont thing. Unless I get hurt, cheaper than a health club.

This time of year, I never drop leafed-out trees fearing that I will destroy songbird nests, so it was surprising today, while cutting brush, to disturb a mother bird.  I was clearing out brambles and small trees, mainly with the brush hog on my tractor but also with the chain saw. There was a clump near the base of the electric company’s guy wire for their pole on our property corner, and I cut one small spruce seedling and then noticed that the larger spruce tree was growing right through the fitting that anchored the wire. I peered in to check it out and here’s what I saw:

You can see the yellow shield for the support wire as it passes under the nest.

You can see the yellow shield for the support wire as it passes under the nest.

I shut things down, ran up to get my camera, and grabbed the above photo and a closeup with the telephoto. It was a gorgeous nest with one pretty egg.

A quick zoom in and time to leave.

A quick zoom in and time to leave.

I backed away and stood partially hidden as I heard the parent chipping away in the nearby apple tree. Pretty soon, she approached, arrived in a flourish of orange and red, and settled. I snapped a few long-distance shots.

She blends in well - if I had not found the nest, I'd never spot her.

She blends in well – if I had not found the nest, I’d never spot her.

The tree is just off our driveway so it’s easy to check. Three hours later, when I walked down to get mail, I could see her tail silhouetted in the shadows. Don’t think that I disturbed her too much, but it was close. I was seconds away from dropping that tree.

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