Thursday, February 07, 2008

Birds and Fishes and Things

The small and meagre bird box that we put up (Mrs BW put up) on our fence a couple of years ago has been attracting interest from a couple of pairs of Blue Tits and a pair of Great Tits. Infact things got out of hand yesterday and the blue tits indulged in a form of gang warfare that had a pair of them scrabbling around on the ground ripping tuffs of feathers out of each other. I watched with increasing alarm as even our dosy cats were bound to notice at some point, but luckily they ceased the fighting and backed off before our lazy feline lay abouts could be bothered to stir themselves from their slumbers and investigate. It would be good if they did nest in the box, but a pair of Blue tits had a good look last year , even moving some bedding in before finally abandoning their efforts.

We continued the birdy theme at tea. The fledglings asked, as they do occasionally, if we would ask them questions, and their chosen subject was birds. After about five minutes I had already exhausted my limited knowledge and Mrs BW helpfully threw in a question about fish. "Name four fish that live in the sea?" She asked. Thats a bit easy I thought and suspected a trap. There was none of course. The fledglings thought for a while and the Weasel (aged 15) supplied Salmon and Trout. Mrs BW appeared to be about to reject Trout but I helpfuly pointed out that there were Sea Trout. Mrs BW threw me a look which did not bode well for later relations. The Munch (aged 13) who had done well on the bird questions piped up with "Gammon", I spluttered into my tea and was just coming up for air when the Weasel added and "Hammock".

"Hammock! I think you mean Haddock. And Gammon is a Ham it comes from pigs." Mrs BW explained helpfully. For a moment I had visions of underwater pigs, and of lying peacefully in the sun stretched out on a haddock. I left the mug of tea alone for a bit.


Reg Pither said...

May I, on behalf of all us Blue Peter viewers, award you a "I'm a grown up now, I am" badge! You managed to go through that entire post without once slipping into Kenneth Williams mode or sniggering or, dare I say, tittering at the mention of the word "tits"!
I still can't achieve such heady heights and so my badge is a long way off yet.
Love the teatime "ask us some questions mater and pater idea". I bet it comes in handy if ever you and Mrs BW have a row. You can turn to the Munch and say "Ask your mother that if she didn't bump the car then who did?"
Big day tomorrow, old chum. The might of the Italians! There'll be tears before teatime, you see!

The Birdwatcher said...

Reg - Before the Italians, we have a game (assuming it is not deemed to sunny to play) against Manchesters premier gay rugby side, the Village Spartans. They gave us a bit of a drubbing last time so we are out for revenge. Not sure that the dress code theme of pink nails and lipstick is a good idea though. Its taking the piss a bit)

Daphne said...

We've got a little row of sparrow nesting boxes for the first time this year - I bet they'll ignore them and nest in the ivy as usual.
Okay, off to have some hammock and chips for lunch now.

The Birdwatcher said...

daphne - Its a bit frustrating watching them and wondering will they won't they nest but worth the wait if they do. Enjoy the hammock!

GadjoDilo said...

The "Spartan Village People", hmmm, I see what you mean, BW! Do they play sport in the buff like their ancient Greek namesakes used to? They problably smear themselves all over with goose fat as well. How did you get on?

The Birdwatcher said...

gadjodilo - We lost. By quite a lot actually. They wore rugby kit whic was a relief. Decent bunch of lads and unlike most teams they stayed for a few beers afterwards.