Yesterday I posted about my fortunate Cardinal sighting. Earlier this evening I noticed him hanging around the front yard so I grabbed my camera to see if I might capture a few more good shots. I determined that this particular bird was not really too bothered with my presence — and he proceeded to flit about the front yard stopping to pose for me in various locations. Mrs. Cardinal appeared on the scene shortly after I started. As usual, she is more difficult to capture since she blends in with the trees so well. But surprisingly, both of them were staying close together and only venturing a short distance from my front porch.
So as I was watching them move about the yard, she starting flying back and forth between my Lilac tree and the Maple about 5 feet away. It seemed kind of strange. Then as she made another visit to the Lilac Tree (which I eventually figured out contained their “Nest”) out pops this other bird who then perched atop the tree. It was kind of non-descript – round and grey with a little tuft on top of its head.
Then the new bird started to fly away — well at least it made an attempt. It lifted off a few inches – flapped it’s wings, but only made it to the next branch before landing again. Meanwhile the Mrs. was continuing the back and forth routine. And Mr. was close by keeping watch.
Then it dawned on me — the way they were both acting – flying about the yard, repeatedly moving from tree to tree, then to the roof, then back to the trees again — finally made sense. This is a baby Cardinal, and they are trying to teach it to fly!! What a neat thing to discover…it never occurred to me how this process happened, but I guess it’s not all that different than teaching a baby to walk.
Unfortunately, I don’t think the baby was too engaged in the plan today, since it quickly retreated back into the tree and wouldn’t come out again. Maybe it was tired or just not ready. I hope it wasn’t just camera shy.
I’ll be on the lookout for future training sessions as well as figuring out if the “it” will be a girl or a boy…