Friday, April 13, 2018
Well, That Answers That Question
This was the silhouette I saw on Wednesday, sitting on the wheel of our osprey nest. Definitely not an osprey. So I wondered, is this why the osprey left the nest in such bad shape, it wouldn't survive the winter winds? Were they giving the space to the eagles, or simply not leaving valuable real estate in good enough shape to steal? After all, who wants a fixer-upper that's not right on the river?
More worrisome, the chickens didn't seem to be afraid of the eagle. Have they grown so used to the non-threatening ospreys that they don't realize this is a bird of prey who will indeed swoop down and eat one of them?
For the past five days, whenever I walked the dog under the non-existent (rather than empty) osprey nest and carried on across the field, I formed an essay in my head, an essay about how change is part of life, and loss is inevitable and unavoidable, and how we really don't have control over very much, just the amount of food we eat, that's pretty much it, and so the osprey not returning is a shame but it's not the end of the world because change. It's always time to say good-bye to something, to someone, whether we want to or not, whether we're prepared to or not.
I'm sorry I don't get to write that essay because in its entirety, it was brilliant, although a tiny bit cynical, and probably far too pragmatic for everyone.
Anyway, now instead I have to work on an essay about resilience and rebuilding, about how no matter what tears you down, you shake your tail feathers and start over, even if it's from scratch, just build it better, because this happened, as we'd hoped:
Bird One came back today, the 13th of April, proving me wrong, and by supper time, there was a fine layer of twigs on the wheel. But it flew a long way to get here, and its partner isn't back yet, so it's working slowly and intermittently, and where is it going to sleep tonight?
I know we're not supposed to put our human emotions onto animals, but seriously, how can it not feel just the teensiest bit discouraged?
Bird Two arrived Saturday so as my friend Jane says, "Life is as it should be." They are now busy building a new nest from the ground up -- literally the ground; one of the ospreys is scooping up dried plants from our gardens and random sticks tossed around our backyard.
It's so much work but there's nothing we can do to help them -- which not the Maritime way at all.