The Art of Mooching

Here’s my response to this week’s Crimson’s Creative Challenge #41. You’ll find this HERE at Crispina’s blog, and see what others have written as a response to the photo prompt below.

https://crimsonprose.files.wordpress.com/2019/08/2-geese.jpg

Mooching Know – How

“Your approach is all wrong, Frizzy. If you hope to get anything from these park tourists, you gotta look like you haven’t eaten for awhile. Flatten those feathers — and please suck in that paunch. An undercarriage like that makes you look positively plump. Last thing you want is to look ready for the platter if the caretaker’s wife comes around.

Ah… Here comes another bunch…bringing popcorn! We’ll eat well if we just hang around this parking lot and look needy. Honk like you barely have the strength. Limp a bit, but don’t overdo it. Lame birds tend to land up in the soup pot.

Watch your toes with those little ones tramping around or you may be limping for real. And whatever you do, don’t let them get their hands around your neck. They love doing that. They may be a miniature variety, but they can be wild.

The Yellow Brick Road?

Here’s my response to Crimson’s Creative Challenge #40. A bit of nonsense maybe, but I had fun imagining where this trail might take a person. 🙂

Can This Be The Yellow Brick Road?

“You need to follow the yellow brick road,” someone told me. “That’s where your dreams will all come true.”

I googled yellow brick road and it brought up an album by Elton John. It appears his dream has come true, but I was actually hoping for a successful career on Wall Street.

So I programmed the navigation system in my car for “yellow brick road” and followed the voice carefully. However, when the synthetic lady told me to head west on County Road #64, a narrow lane, I got a bit nervous. What kind of career awaits me out here in the boonies?

I abandoned the car when the country road morphed into Shady Trail. After a thirty-minute hike I’m seeing a shining path ahead, but it doesn’t look like yellow bricks. Still, I kind of like the peace and quiet here. Perhaps I’ll become a famous naturalist.

Skirmishes

On these cool-ish mornings I watch from my doorway as the hummers come to the two feeders I’ve set up. There appear to be about four juvies, though who can count such fast-moving flight artists.

I don’t know why they make hummingbird feeders with more than three holes. Perhaps in the land where they were designed, hummers know how to peacefully co-exist, but in our yard they behave much like humans. One feeder, one bird. If any other shows up, he or she is immediately urged to leave. Sometimes a few siblings can drink at the same feeder for a time, but mainly it seems to be, “This is mine. You beat it!”

Last summer I decided to hang a second feeder about a metre over and a metre lower than the main one. Occasionally I will see a bird at each, but more often the bird at the upper feeder will drive away the one wanting to light on the lower feeder. Sigh…

one hummingbird two feeders eight options zero tolerance

A few times this morning an oriole has come to the feeder to get his breakfast, so the syrup has gone down fast. I’m serving up a richer brew these days: 1 part sugar; 3 parts water. I’ve read they need more calories during migration — and that time will be coming soon. Though they be feisty little things, I hate to see them go.

I have a number of tubs of flowers on the step underneath the feeders, and planted two of them with red nicotiana this spring, thinking they’d appeal to hummers. As I observe, the hummers pretty much ignore the nicotiana blooms and seem to love my salvia and reddish-orange lantana blossoms. Duly noted for next spring. 🙂