Do many people have binoculars in their bathroom? I asked myself this question while sitting in the bath this morning. I’m watching every black bird that flies over the house with my binoculars. Looking for a special bird who hasn’t shown up today… and I’m worried.
I can’t believe how sad I feel. This bird has only been in our lives for about a week but already I’m fond of him.
How did we meet? Well, I was walking around the garden and we just kind of met behind one of the shrubs, he was walking one way and I was walking the other. He was very laid back about our meeting and I was totally uncool.
It’s not every day you come foot to foot with a fully grown jackdaw. He looked at me with his beautiful piercing blue eyes and “crawked” hello. I ran indoors to tell Andrew!
To start with if George (Andrew named him not me!) saw either of us through the window he would come running and crawking. For a couple of days he didn’t do too much flying and what he did do ended in near disaster (one flying expedition ended with him trying to land in the beech tree, he fell out and landed on the roof of the greenhouse and slid to the ground looking slightly embarrassed).
He’s now got flying sussed – in fact he seems to relish in the fact that he can fly and I can’t, and does circles of the house just to show off.
So where did he come from? I think the answer to that is our chimney. A jackdaw pair had set up home in one of them a couple of months ago. If you happened to be sleeping in the room with the chimney breast it was a little hard to have a lie-in in the morning. Jackdaws like to chat – and argue!
I have a theory that George was the black-sheep (or should that be white-jackdaw) of the family. A strip of feathers about an inch wide, stretching from the top of his head to the back of his neck, have been systematically plucked (but don’t tell him because I don’t think he knows he’s bald). When we met I made sure I left him to wander around the garden – in the hope that his parents would return and feed him. We waited, worried, but they didn’t come.
He’s now growing up. His body is filling out – and he’s looking more like a proper jackdaw (ignoring the bald patch). He stays away for longer – I wish I knew where he went and what he was doing. Has he joined up with one of the jackdaw gangs in the area? I’m hoping we’ve helped him over his rough patch – that he can now become a proper jackdaw.
I’m checking the garden again from the bathroom window and it’s lunchtime. I double-take the birds in the garden. At first I think it’s just a blackbird… but no… it’s George. He’s back.