something sinister

People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest.
Hermann Hesse


(birdhouse / Julie Cook / 2018)

So do you remember the other day when I posted a few pictures of one of my bluebird houses
with a wad of straw appearing to be pushed out of the hole?
I made mention of how I clean out all the boxes in February as birds like to basically start fresh
each season.
Much like we do—when buying a house and moving, we usually like to buy a cleaned up house in
which to move in to.

The image got me thinking about spring cleaning…
of how we not only literally seem to find renewing projects each new spring season that
we must be about—such as the cleaning out of the old while making way for the new…
but that Springtime is also a good reminder for the need to be about our spiritual cleaning
and renewal needs as well.

So imagine my dismay when I walked past the birdhouse yesterday and noticed, oddly, that
the straw was no longer poking out of the hole but was now rather pushed back inside.

Yet upon further inspection, I noted a single blue feather stuck to the box.
Hmmmmmmm…

It began to dawn on me that I’d really not seen the bluebirds as of late scooting in an out of the
box like I normally do.
They are typically really quite busy this time of year as I often hear the chattering chirps of
a young brood emanating from deep within the box.

I’ve not heard that.

Upon further inspection, I spotted something most alarming…

I also notice that one of the bird feeders is hanging precariously on two of the three chains as if something had unchained the feeder—the feeder which is oddly completely empty…

My suspect…

So yes, I have raccoons that frequent our yard.
I’ve caught them many a time at night rummaging around the feeders as well as grabbing up the
stale bread that I’d tossed out earlier for the birds.

I knew raccoons would steal eggs from the nest of birds, but would they actually take a bird?
And a quick little search revealed that yes, raccoons will take a bird from a nest…

Whereas it does sound cruel and even sinister, I suppose I have to view this nature
doing what nature does.
Yet it doesn’t mean I have to like it.

Unsuspecting, living life, taking care of a brood, then disaster and devastation strikes
in the dark of night…

This sad reminder of wildlife doing what wildlife does brings to mind another who
prefers to come in the dark shadows of night..taking that which is truly not his…

his is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of
light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light,
and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed.
But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light,
so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.

John 3:19-21

13 comments on “something sinister

  1. Citizen Tom says:

    Sorry about your bluebird. Mounting a birdhouse on the side of a tree is problematic. It is lots easier, but predators know how to climb trees. Here are some options.
    http://nestboxbuilder.com/nestbox-predator-controls.html

    Bluebirds raise several broods, and they don’t always use the same nest. It is quite possible that another bluebird pair may take a fancy to your house. So you may want to add some predator guards or mount your birdhouse in a safer location.

    • thanks Tom—yeah, I’ve got 4 boxes on the two river birch trees that are right by the driveway. My husband hates these trees and has already cut down one and is vowing to take out these as well.
      They are a nusiance as they are constantly shedding something…plus they are killing the grass all around them not to mention what they’re doing to the gutters.

      But we built in basically a pasture that had a few standing oaks here and there. The two that framed our house had to come down about 3 years ago due to disease and I was devastated. So now talk of taking out these two trees that reamin near the house are a sore subject.

      I had bridhouses on the two oaks and once watched a corn snake head across the driveway over to the tree, up the tree and into the birdhouse. Thankfull I knew there wasn’t a next inside but it really made me think that who knows what goes on at night when I’m not out watching.

      So the trees will most likely come down in the fall and I’ll be looking for a plan B for my birds—usually I have various birds with nests all over the place—in the bushes, the barberries, the crepe myrtles….but this year, oddly, no nests to speak of.

      • Citizen Tom says:

        Sounds like you have some room.

        Bluebirds actually prefer to nest in the open. If you stick a bluebird house about 5 – 10 feet up a pole in the open, odds are you will get a bluebird. If you buy/build a birdhouse that can be opened without disturbing the nest, it won’t hurt to open and inspect it once a week. So long as the baby bird are in still in their eggs or not yet mobile, they will just stay in the nest, and the parents will come back. Just don’t want to scare fledglings out of their nest.

        If you inspect your birdhouses, you can remove wasp nests, and clean out the nests of wrens before the mother bird has a chance to lay eggs.

        Another thought. If you are anywhere near a pond or some such body of water, you may also wish to try a purple martin house.
        https://www.purplemartin.org/purple-martins/housing-standards/

        I built one for my mother when I was in college. When spring arrived, I almost did not get around to putting it up in time. When I was raising it up (that “house” had eight “apartments”), to my astonishment I saw a martin already flying around looking thing over. Was not long before a flock of them had taken over.

        My grandma, who was staying with my mother at the time, said the birds sounded like a bunch of gossiping old ladies.

        Since swallows eat mosquitoes, they are worth the trouble.

  2. Oh, so sad, dear Julie! But what a perfect analogy! I had an incident with “nature” recently that I will be writing about as well… a wealth of analogies in God’s creation! Thank you for this thought-provoking post! Once again, you “knocked it out of the park.” 😉 🙂 ❤ ❤

  3. atimetoshare.me says:

    We discovered a possum walking through our yard. It’s under Paul’s shed/man cave/studio. I will probably have a post about it soon.

  4. Tricia says:

    Oh, I’m sorry about the bluebird incident. I have the same problem with neighborhood cats using my feeders as their personal dinner buffet. I so enjoy having wild birds in the yard but it does attract predators too.

  5. SLIMJIM says:

    YIkes…seeing the feather really is something!!!

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