Saturday, February 18, 2012

Blech weather, funny bird

Today belies everything I said about flowers and sunshine and the beauty of spring on the island.  It is dark and stormy, rain slashing across my face as I try to walk Eddie in weather too windy for umbrellas.  Even with all the lights on in the house, it feels like the middle of night, but is only mid-morning.

Petey the wonder dog is resting comfortably after 36 hours of throwing up and a rush visit to the vets yesterday.  Eddie, despite his two kilometer brisk walk in foul weather, is whining and antsy and driving me crazy - he is temporarily confined to the mudroom because, despite a good towelling, he is - well - muddy.  Suck it up, Eddie.

Sadie, seeing me return with Eddie,  thinks she wants a walk - she would hate it and the cold and damp could bring on a collapse so she's going to have to quit pacing and wait until the weather improves a bit.  It is a good day to catch up on blogs and tell you about our latest, albeit temporary I'm sure, addition. 

Our newest addition
He (or she? Anyone know how to tell male and female pigeons apart without handling them?) appeared ten days ago.  I was about to take Eddie for a walk when I noticed him/her on the road a couple of feet from the end of my drive - staring at my house with great intensity.  A truck came roaring down the street much too quickly, and I was alarmed to see the bird didn't fly away - in fact, the tires missed the bird by mere inches.

I figured the pigeon must be injured, and sprinkled a little seed from my feeder at the edge driveway, hoping to entice him/her out of danger's way.  Indeed, the bird trotted over and started pecking on it.  S/he was still there when I returned from the walk an hour later.  When Eddie expressed curiosity, the pigeon flew to the top of  my roof - not incapacitated as I feared, though perhaps a bit lopsided on one side.

The next morning,  I opened my blinds there she/he was again - standing at the end of the driveway staring at the house.  I decided to call him/her Spye.  A good unisex name for a pigeon who may be a CIA agent in disguise.  In fact, I have since caught Spye trying to put a wiretap on my phones:

Dum dum dum dum dum...I'm just an innocent bird playing with the wires....

Every single day since then, Spye has appeared on my driveway.  For a while, it was like clockwork - arrival was 7 AM, departure was 12:30 PM.  In between, Spye pecked a bit at any stray seeds that had drifted over from the feeder on the other side of the front lawn, but never roamed far.  I began to sprinkle some seeds along the edge of the drive daily - sort of like taking coffee to the surveillance team.

Snack time? Already?

Recently, Spye has changed the routine a little (maybe Spye realized he'd/she'd been 'made'), and became a little less predictable - sometimes arriving earlier, sometimes later, usually gone by early afternoon but sometimes still there at 4:00 PM.  Showing up every single day. 

Ironically, one of the blogs I read by a blogger in New Mexico also recently had a lone pigeon show up - stayed for a week then took off again. But that one was banded and the blogger was able to track where it came from - Arizona.  I suspect Spye is from somewhere much closer than that. 

Spye isn't banded.  There is a flock of pigeons who regularly feed a couple of blocks away from seed provided by the resident of a townhouse complex, but Spye always comes here alone. 
I have no idea how long Spye will stay, nor why Spye is here and not with a flock.  But as long as I don't see a Swat Team arrive, I figure there's no harm in having another mouth to feed and critter to watch.

Welcome, Spye.  I wish you could talk.

Spye, the Surveillance Pigeon, at the end of the driveway
Keeping watch


EvenSong said...

I immediately though of Carson's visitor, Amelia.
Your's looks plump and healthy.

Hope Petey is feeling better. What was going on?

Our wether turned on us today, too. And I was planning on riding a certain B&W spottie horse!

georgia little pea said...

What's wrong with Petey? Did he eat something bad? 36 hours is a long chuck up.

Sorry to hear about your weather. Maybe your brief fling with the sun ended because it came here. We've finally started to get some summer heat :)

Wonder what that pigeon is about. We got visitors in the house too, over summer. A grasshopper and a huntsman spider. Every time we take them out, they come back in. I should give them names too.

Jean said...

Petey was likely having trouble with one or more of the medications he was on post dental surgery. He now has stuff to coat his digestive tract, stuff to prevent nausea, stuff to reduce any reflux, and instructions for a home-cooked diet for the next three days. I am slave to my dogs.

GLP - send our sunshine back up here right this minute! (But you can keep the spider).

Cathy, Che and Jeepers said...

Spye looks like a male to me. Lots of iridescent feathering around the neck and what sounds like pretty aggressive behaviour. They are so smart. and has figured out how to get food from humans.
Hope little Petey is feeling better.

Black Jack's Carol said...

I really like Spye, and what a great name! I googled some ways of identifying gender, and one site said to put the pigeon in front of a mirror. If it bows and coos and generally gets all excited, it's probably a male LOL

I hope there will be a break in the weather soon. It was dismal here yesterday, except for about an hour in the afternoon when the sun made a delightful half-appearance. The seawall was jam-packed with people desperate for light.

Hope Petey is on the mend and all your charges doing well.