Friday, May 2, 2008

The waiting game

This girl has been on the nest for a while now, though we are not sure exactly how long. It's funny because I try to stay alert, so that I know when she decides to start sitting on her eggs. So far, she has managed to fool me every time. Unfortunately, for all the time she has devoted to laying eggs and trying to hatch out babies, she has not been successful. Last spring, she hid her first clutch of eggs so well that we never found them. She hatched one chick and promptly lost it. Next clutch of eggs went a little better---two babies to show for her efforts. The only problem was that she made her nest high in the barn, on top of the hay bales, and the babies came down without being big enough to fly. Not a pretty picture. This year she made her nest on top of the hay bales again, right up under the barn roof. We made an unsuccessful effort to catch her last weekend, with the plan to transport the nest and eggs to the ground floor of the barn and place all of them inside the dog kennel. Our thinking was that the chicks would hatch out and she would be able to keep them safe inside the kennel until they were big enough to be out and about. She had other thoughts on the matter, thank you very much! You would have thought we were trying to commit murder for all the commotion it caused. We retreated. Now, every morning when I go to the barn for the first round of lamb bottles, I climb the ladder to check on her and see if by chance any eggs have hatched. So far, all I see is her indignant glare. I do not feel very hopeful that this will have a happy ending. Stay tuned.

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