With Spring comes new babies on Zen..as well as a few old friends.
We have elk nursery herds as well as the deer nursery groups.
We know Limpy’s coyote pack has new babies trying out their singing voices… even if we can’t hear them over the big kids.
Bunny popped by to let us know that they are working on family business
Bobcat Kitty is sticking to the woods with little fuzz balls ready to start learning as well.
But… The most fun so far have been;
Wednesday morning, Ma and I were sitting out in the porch , predawn when the hummies heard us and began to come in.
We have Hummie and Mrs. and we have Liam and Syrah; both mated pairs..Generation One and Two.. We have Lass and Hollywood, not mated, but a third generation, from last year. Wednesday morning, The next generation came in.
Hummie and Mrs. as well as Liam and Syrah have been busy already this Spring bringing in a total of six new babies. They brought them all in at the same time to introduce them to Ma and I. We couldn’t stop smiling and laughing at the little hummers flitting about in a swarm. They have been in morning and night each day since, of course. Always well before dawn and out and about by the time the sun rises .
At last count…which means little.. We had Ten adult Annas , a Calliope male and a Rufus male…as well as the six babies.. but, then last night, I counted five Ana males at Liam’s feeder alone . Four sat on the fence and one at the feeder after they had sent the kids off to bed.
So far, Syrah and Mrs. hover round and round the feeder as they gently push the babies off to the nest shortly before dark. As usual, we have at least one wee little monster that keeps sneaking back sending the girls back to shuffling him back home.
Once all the babies are tucked in , all of the adults come to hang out with Ma and I for a good fifteen minutes before they head off to bed as well.. or Ma and I head in.
The adults sit around the five feeders we have around the East side of the house, where we are, sitting on fences, feeders, bushes and so on as we all chat quietly so as not to make the little brats curious again.
The adults will fly about in one last effort to play before they all just crash from babysitting. Quietly, they surround the feeders, squirming to get a spot on the favorite feeders or wanting to be just left alone to sit on one of the others… Usually Mrs. and Syrah. Lass will come to sit at a feeder next to Ma or myself to chat too, of course.
We are just waiting for Lass to grab up all the kids on the day she has to babysit and wait by the door to set them free in the house so we have to babysit for her. She still always stares in the windows and door waiting or looking for us.
Hummies having a nice hatching this early means we could easily have a second brood this summer. We haven’t even gotten in all of the families we normally have yet. More Calliopes , and Rufus are sure to show up very soon as well as Broad-tails, Blackchins, and the infamous Blue Hummer that we only see once a year at best as he flies through.
Hummie, getting up in age, still has no problems working with Mrs. to get out at least a pair of twins each year and up to two hatchings. Liam and Syrah started adding their kids this last year and who knows about Lass maybe next year. But, in any case, we have four generations that have decided to stay here and possibly more as we have other males . We know Hummie, he stands out as does Mrs. and Syrah as well as Saran, Liam’s sister, Hollywood, a male at least on his third year as he was mostly grown last year. Lass, of course, stands out both in color , size, and just because she stays close to us after spending time in the house this winter when we almost lost her…. The others? well, maybe if I could see better but they are mostly male and female Annas..so a good chance they are Hummie’s kids as well.
We don’t see the Broad-Tails as much as we use to. They talked with Hummie one winter. He told them that , Of Course, he stayed here year round so they thought, Hey, Why not?…. Because it gets friggin’ cold up here, that is why not.
The mated pair stayed in the porch close to my window for several days, chilled but with plenty of food. As soon as the weather broke and the sun came out, they headed out.
I hear they left Hummie a nasty note pinned to the feeder.. They come through but do not stay long… The night gets chilly and they head out… Cutting the trip short.. too cold.
Well, I am keeping this short. Seems to work out fine for me and folk stop by or they don’t . I imagine people are stir crazy about now and don’t want to hear about me not being bummed about being locked down.
“Lil Red” our tractor is down yet again… Yup.. Ran perfect. Shut it down for the night started it back up and it was running rough and finally died. I got it started again but gave up for the afternoon on it. Next day, it wouldn’t even start. I am figuring that it is electrical. Weather has been wet cold and windy the last couple days so I will worry about it this week. I have a plan..
I still have to get the tiller..which is still running fine.. Down into “Lil Eden” . I had a rough time just getting her into the Test Garden so going down a walkway and a set of steps to the first garden, and then down a worse set to the lowest garden, I am not exactly sure how I am going to get it back up again. It has been down since before we put in all the layered areas….Though I just this second came up with a back up plan..hmmm.. See, this is why I write.
It is still to cold to put plants in, but we do have them hardening in the porch.
Zen everyone came to visit
Ma and I were sitting out in the porch area, Ma having to start work hours earlier than normal puts us outside even earlier.
While we sat, I heard a Pheasant call out from below. I stopped to listen. I haven’t seen or heard a Ringneck Pheasant up here for decades….. And again, even closer to be followed by a second out farther. Now growing up in Funnyside, we had pheasants everywhere, so when I hear them it just makes me grin ear to ear. Right up there with Elk bugling.
We sat chatting while I listen to him every so often, calling Zen his ..Works for me.. I am sure Limpy was excited too.” Pheasant’s back on the menu kids!”
Our first Hummie came in about then, still more shadows than anything resembling light . It was Mrs. She checked in with us.
” You guys are going to be here for a bit? “ She asked Ma.
” Yep, for a bit yet. Why? “
” Oh…Nothing.. I’ll be right back. “
” Ok then. “ Ma waved to her as she flew off.
Moments later, several adults had flown in to grab a drink and chat with us when suddenly it sounded like we in a hoard of mosquitoes . Six baby hummers were flying around Liam’s feeder next to me, causing Ma and I to start grinning and laughing to each other. Saying hi to the new kids and congratulating Hummie, Mrs. Liam and Syrah as there were obviously kids from both pairs there.
We couldn’t hardly believe what we were seeing and even more so that both mated pairs held all the kids back until both families were ready to show them off to us all at the same moment.
More adults came in to watch the babies feeding and playing. We could not keep track of all the hummers flying into the porch area and all over the deck. Hovering in front of our faces, chirping or chasing one another. Mrs. watching over the little horde while Syrah lay back fanning herself with her wing.
About that time, over the berm came in several does, a few preggers to come visit, grab a bit of mineral block and a drink. Our girl stood off to the side with her yearling that she had just outside our bedroom window almost a year ago now, watching all the hummers.
” Wow!….. There are lots now, aren’t there? “
” Yep, pretty cute huh? “ Ma said to our doe.
” Well… There’s lots anyway. “
The deer hung around the yard, most at the lick, one walking around the yard…Tasting Everything…
” What Are you doing? “ I asked her.
” Ummm… pruning. “
” Munching. ” Ma said.
” Meh…. There’s lots here. I am pruning so that everything will bush out. “
” Uh huh…Sure. ” Ma said as she glared at the doe.
” What? Did you want to eat this or something? “ The doe said as she watched Ma staring at her. ” Gawwwwhhhh! Fine! What-ever.” and off she walked in a huff.
” We just need coyote kids , Bunnie , elk and maybe Dumbear to come in now. “ I said, grinning.
” Hey Ma!” Rhey called from the lower field as her, Red and Dennis came ambling up.
Our doe watched Rhey, shrugged and packed up the girls, heading up to the berm to watch as the little pack came sauntering up to the yard.
Rhey and Red waved as they slowly made their way North. ” Hi MA! Hi Da!” They both called again.
“Hey Rhey! Hi Red!….” We called back.
Dennis, behind as always, was snooping around the lower wood pile , then ignoring everyone around him, walked into the yard to stand watching us, some 15 yards away,
” Hi Mom! Seen any mice? We’re hunting!……For food.”
” Hi Dennis. No mice yet today.” Ma called back to him.
” Seen Bunnie?” Dennis called back.
Bunnie, sitting on the other side of the deck, frantically waved her hands, mouthing ” No! You haven’t seen me. Crap he didn’t see me did he? Gawh.. He never shuts up once he starts talking about mice. “
” Uhhhhhhh….” Ma said as she watched Bunnie going into silent fits. ” No. No Dennis. No Bunnie today. “
Dennis cocked his head. Looked to me. I shrugged. Then back to Ma. ” Are you suuuuuuure?”
” Nope . No Bunnies around here.” Ma said as bunnie fell over on her back exhausted.
Dennis stood watching us, then looked around the area slowly. Bunnie curled up by one of the posts for the deck trying to look small. ” Weeeeelllllll.. ok Then. if you are suuuureeee. If you see her tell I have some new mouse stories to tell her. “
” Ok Dennis. Will do. The girls are leaving you again.” Ma called back to him.
” Crap! They always do that! They tried to lock me in Blue the other day but….” He wiggled his paw in the air..” No thumbs.. couldn’t get the door open. Bobcat Kitty offered to help… I am not happy with her right now.”
” Maybe he should tell her some mouse stories” Whispered Bunnie from her hiding spot… I snorted.
Dennis ran off to catch up with the girls only to have Red smack him in the back of the head for holding them up.
The deer watched the coyote kids, unimpressed , from the Berm.
The Pheasant called back through the fells again; ” Mine! First! Mine! Zen is mine!”
Farther out we heard a response;” Shut! …. Up!” Tom Turkey annoyed at being woken before the sun was up and he along with his girls, still in their tree.
” No! You Shut up! “ The Pheasant called back.
” I am going to Beat you!” The Tom called to the rooster.
” Screw this! “ Hummie grumped, ” I am going to kick both their butts! They are bugging my kids and now they aren’t finishing their breakfast.” and with that, Hummie flew off, Liam close behind to go take care of business .
From the distance we could hear; ” Hey! Get off!.. Would you.. Hey ! Knock it.. Hey! Ouch! Stop.. would you.. Just.. Crap! DA!!!!! He keeps touching me! You little.. Damn it.. Hey!…”
I just laughed as we watched the baby hummies flitting about . Bunnie headed over to the junipers ” Remember.. You never saw me. “
Ma got up, it was getting a little chill out as I opened the door.
” See you kids later. “
The little hums chorused; ” Byeeeee! Nice to meet you! See you laters”
I grinned, The morning had been fairly busy already and the sun had yet to come up.
A nice way to start
Just another day on Zen Mountain