Monday, February 27, 2012
I seem to have unwittingly created a dove sanctuary. Everywhere I look, there's a dove in our garden.
What started as feeding two breeding doves whose eggs kept being stolen by currawongs, has turned into my own flock.
On our teeny tiny patch of grass this morning, I counted 12 breakfasting - three quarters of them babies.
Some sit in our tree afterward, others just loll about on the grass.
They don't bother the native birds, even the two willie wagtails who seem to spend most of the day in the same tree don't tell them off - and they're birds who like to give everything a telling off with their telltale shaking-maracca sound, which means they're annoyed.
One landed in front of The Cat, who was sitting around doing nothing, a couple of weeks ago and gave her a beakful. The Cat looked at the bird with a "what-the-hell" expression but didn't move towards it. So the willie wagtail walked straight up to The Cat's face and let loose again. Luckily for the wagtail, The Cat was a mild beast.
While I'm not encouraging any more doves into the garden, I have to admit that I find the cooing, their weird dovey dancing and the proximity of their general animalness comforting. When a pet dies, the house feels quiet. Thanks to the menagerie of birds in the garden, though, I'm assured of at least one, if not 12, pairs of beady eyes that register my presence whenever I walk outside.