Skinny Has Friends!

Skinny Shares Lunch With A Friend

Our co-resident Skinny the thrasher has been expanding his social circle!  As I told you in a Wandering about a month ago, we first met Skinny when he was using our bird block as a source of food during his struggle to survive after being orphaned.  He has since claimed our yard as his territory.  Until this spring, Skinny didn’t seem to have many friends, but now things are changing.

Last week, we saw Skinny not only sharing “his” bird block with another thrasher, but actively feeding it.  We think, but aren’t certain, that Skinny’s friend is a juvenile.  However, some courting behaviors mimic parent/child behaviors.  Our guess is based on how, in the photos Jim took, the bird being fed seems to have a shorter, less curved beak, which is one of the few ways young thrashers differ from fully mature.  If so, then Skinny may have a family.  Adult thrashers take turns minding the nest and the young, which might explain why we haven’t seen two adults foraging together the way we did the two thrashers we assume were Skinny’s parents.

Skinny has also come to something of an agreement with P.F., the cottontail who likes to hop up on the bird block and stuff himself.  Possibly because an earlier incarnation saved his life, Skinny considers the bird block “his.”  Although he has never seemed to mind sharing it with the sparrows, finches, quail, and doves, he was not happy to have this large, furry creature plop himself on top and munch away.

However, last week, Jim got pictures of P.F. and Skinny sharing the bird block.  This doesn’t mean they don’t still compete from time to time.  We’ve seen Skinny sneak up on P.F. and poke him right on his fuzzy rump.  And we’ve seen P.F. launch himself for the top of the block, never mind who else is there.  All in all, Skinny seems the more territorial, while P.F. is simply opportunist.

Skinny and P.F. Have A Lunch Date

Our toads are also back, and our teeny-tiny pond is once again hosting both nightly singalongs and copious quantities of tadpoles.  We saw one of last year’s tadpoles perched on the edge of the pond, contemplating whether he could manage to leap down into the water.  Hey, four inches is a long way when you’re only about half an inch tall!

Wolf’s Search is now off to the copy editor, and I’m reviewing Wolf’s Soul before moving along to writing the conclusion.  Time to curl up with a stack of paper and a red pencil or three.  Catch you later!

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5 Responses to “Skinny Has Friends!”

  1. King Ben's Grandma Says:

    We just discovered a nest in the peak of the eaves on the front of our house. I haven’t identified the residents yet. I know they’re not House Finches or Mockingbirds. I can’t find my laminated bird identifier card so I’m going to have to try the internet.
    Very exciting to read the progress on the Firekeeper/Blind Seer books!

  2. Harried Harry Says:

    As I was cooking the chicken (BBQ style) outside, I leaned back in my chair and noticed the swallow nest has “magically” reappeared on my small porch. We’ve had swallows for close to 25 years on the different porches we have. Since these are well protected, under a roof, the birds are very happy. The garden is only about 15 ft. away and the bugs live under the large 40 year old pecan trees.

    One of the popular trees has a bee’s hive in it, so most of the fruit trees will be taken care of. The hive is in a hole in the tree about 30 ft. off the ground. Spring has definitely come, along with the hot temperatures. It’s supposed to get into the high 90’s in the next few days.

    Enjoy your week and stay away from the sun unless you slather yourself with sunblock! I forgot and got a little bit of sunburn, but I won’t forget again.

    • janelindskold Says:

      We’ve hit the nineties a couple of times, but mostly we’re not that hot yet. I am VERY grateful as my infant plants struggle.

      I rather envy you your pecans…

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