Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Bird update

Robin on bird table
It is Blog Day again today, and would I let you down? Would I? Well, yes, actually, I probably would, on another day. But not today. Despite the fact that very shortly (after all the cars with people going to work have finished) I shall travel to the second ordeal of three at the university campus, I have a lovely little blog post for you.

Mr A has become a little overexcited by 'his' offspring, the baby robins. He did indeed go out and buy live mealworms for them, and I can report that opening the fridge to be confronted by a plastic tub of squirming worms is disconcerting.

It reminds me of when I was younger and mum worked in the school biology lab. We had to be careful when opening tubs of margarine, in case they contained maggots, or locusts, rather than margarine. I seem to remember dead rats in the freezer, but that might be apocryphal. We were certainly interrupted during dinner times to watch locusts shedding their skins in a glass-fronted box, until mum discovered that something about the creatures was giving her respiratory problems and they were given to someone else to look after over the holidays.

The bird table disappeared from the garden one day last week, and Mr A admitted that he'd put it in the garage for the robins. The fledgeling robins left the nest soon after that last blog post, but were heard cheeping from odd corners of the garage, and we can only hope that they all made it outside and we don't find tiny bird corpses in corners behind motorbike tyres and planks of wood.

The bird table is back in the garden now, complete with additional fat balls that have attracted blue tits, who also love the worms (they eat more than the robins, anyway). The blackbirds scavenge around the foot of the table where the worms end up if they escape, and Mr A has also seen and identified a goldfinch. I have requested no more live worms in the fridge, so he has now bought some dried mealworms. We'll see if they are as popular as the live ones were.

University work continues in the background to this ornithological obsession, both for Mr A and for me. Mr A has now submitted his last assignment before his two exams in June and is moving on to revision, and I have now completed one out of three of my final assessments. My presentation about a Stroke case study went well, and the next activity will be something practical that will involve coeliac disease, although none of us knows exactly what will happen. Some of my student 'Friends' on Facebook are going a little bit crazy trying to imagine what we will have to do, but I'm just tired of the whole assessment thing, and will be very glad when it's all over. I'm not entirely sure what I will do then, but rest assured, blog readers, you will be among the first to know.

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