Thursday, May 09, 2013

After Man

Two weeks ago, I discovered that a robin had built a nest on one of my bookshelves at work:

This morning, I checked the nest and found this:

I can only see three open beaks - I hope the other  two eggs have hatched. The mother is now back in the nest.

I apologise if this blog has veered off on an animal-related tangent recently, but so has my life. I never expected to end up selling books surrounded by cows, horses, sheep, pheasants, dogs, robins, rats and a mink (sadly now deceased). Sometimes, I secretly yearn for the days when I lived in a flat in London.

But even my lovely 1930s flat in Twickenham didn't completely protect me from the brutal forces of nature. Copulating foxes regularly kept us awake. They also prompted me to run half-naked into the street, thinking that I was rescuing a woman from being attacked (thankfully nobody caught me standing in the middle of the road in my boxer shorts).

One day our hot water stopped working. We phoned a plumber called Trevor, who took our boiler apart and found a bird's nest inside. Trevor, who was never usually lost for words, shook his head and chuckled. Later, Trevor casually remarked that he was surprised that we hadn't suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning, as the nest had blocked up the flue.

Next time I find a large deposit of bird excrement on the computer, I will have to remind myself that there is no escape. Even in London, the animals are secretly watching and waiting.


Mrs Jones said...

How splendid! Now head off to Haiths website and get some live mealworms delivered - the little tubs are the most convenient - and leave them around, with the lids off, where the mother bird can easily access them. You'll make her life so much easier and there'll be a greater likelihood of all the babies surviving.

ravingreader said...

Did want to let you know that that photo of the hungry baby birds made me burst out laughing (real LOL!) at work because it was so unexpected and just plain lovely. Thanks for that!

liz in texas

Lucy Fisher said...

... and rig up a baldaquin for the computer.

lucy joy said...

A few weeks away from blogger, and I return to find Steerforth has been replaced by Doctor Doolittle.

Rog said...

On a cautionary note, don't fall for 'take your cat to work day'.

Steerforth said...

Mrs Jones - I'll see what I can do. In the meantime, I suppose I could bring in a few worms from the garden?

Ravingreader - That's what I love about the internet. The 21st century may not have brought us moonbases and helicars, but if someone in Texas is enjoying seeing some baby birds that have just hatched in England, that's far better.

Lucy - Definitely. I'm using my anti-bacterial products to avoid catching anything, but I can't do much about the rotting hay.

Lucy - It's ridiculous. Even my garden now has a newt and a baby toad. Are there more animals around, or was I too caught up in the 9 to 5 world to notice them before?

Rog - Someone on Facebook also made a comment about the kitten, but they seemed to be under the impression that the robin's nest was on my bookselves at home! As much as I love robins, I draw the line at having them fly around the sitting room.

Nota Bene said... don't you think you should set up a webcam so we can all watch at any time? There may even be a BBC series in it...

Mrs Jones said...

Ordering live mealworms is dead easy - the Royal Mail deliver them for free and 3 x 40g tubs (which should easily last a week or more) only costs about £6. The mealworms don't smell and you don't have to feed them (there's enough food in their tub) but you need to keep them somewhere dark and cool - I would imagine a dark corner on the concrete floor of the warehouse will be fine. In the past I've trained robins to come and sit on the edge of the open tub while I hold it in my hand and they'll fill their beaks until they can't get any more in there. It's awesome!