Mother Blue appears to be gone, there’s been no sign of her since late Tuesday afternoon. My heart’s a little heavy. Okay, not a little.
I have a video clip of her in the empty nestbox, apparently surveying my post-fledge cleaning skills. In the clip she looks right at the camera and pecks it like she did during both the nest-building and incubation phases. Interesting how once the eggs hatched she never bothered with her own reflection in the camera again. Ever. Once the youngster appeared, she had that laser-focus of motherhood. Her entire existence revolved around feeding and protecting her young. I can only assume she met her demise, perhaps in the way that smaller birds do: in the jaws of predators like cats or larger birds of prey like hawks. Or was she accidentally struck by a car?
Nature doesn’t care.
The fledglings and the Dad returned to the area around our yard several times yesterday and I was able to snap a few photos of them flitting among the budding Maples. I am certain I saw three little ones and believe I saw all four. (With mortality odds at 25%, I’m reminded that seeing three of the four is good.)
But nature doesn’t care. Nature just natures.
I am the only thing in nature that comes anywhere close to loving these particular birds—the only one to laugh at their antics, smile at their charm, appreciate their being. The only one to feel acute grief in their loss. So this pinch in my heart may be the only tribute to Mother Blue. The rest of the universe carries on after such loss, unconcerned. I’ve learned a lot about death and release during my Bluebird ambassadorship, but I haven’t un-learned how to care. And wouldn’t want to.
Here’s my small monument to her existence. I know nature doesn’t care that I post this, but I do and memorials are, after all, for the benefit of the living.