I have been a very bad blogger this past two weeks. The weekends have been full to overflowing with activity, and not all of it has been of a pleasant nature.
First, though, on the pleasant and positive side, John has become a newly fledged homing pigeon flyer. That’s probably not what they are called, but there it is. We have 18 homers, young ones, that he is training for eventual racing. They are fascinating creatures! I love them too, as I am a sucker for most animals. The whole homing pigeon thing is very involved, and we are lucky to have two or three really wonderful mentors in the area. The birds get “flown” every time it’s nice weather and we are around (and we plan ahead and don’t feed them first thing in the morning), which usually means on the weekends. It’s been up and down crazy, as during the first flight last weekend we weren’t sure they would all return. They flew around and around above the farm, and then perched in the trees above the loft, and sat and sat. But return they finally did, finding the correct door in the building, and with each successive flight the majority of them have learned to get home with more alacrity.
This past Thursday, however, 3 of them failed to come back. John has to close the loft up at night so that no predators gain entry, and the ones not back are left to their own devices. A friend of ours from Round Pond, about a mile away, called last night and told us that 3 of our birds were eating like little piggies under his bird feeder! We couldn’t catch them then, but this morning two returned, looking the worse for wear, and then amazingly, the other one returned late this afternoon! I really didn’t think it would happen. They are so young, and they were not born here, so it makes it difficult for me to comprehend how they do it.
The pigeons are quite beautiful, and of course, I have my favorites. It’s always the way. Learning about their phenomenal ability to navigate and get back to our little speck on the map is quite the adventure. More on our winged adventures tomorrow :*)