A Robin's Diary

in the year 2002

Howard L Greer

all rights reserved

For the Four Movies of each day  click on the Robin Movie link below for that day.

Note: the Movies  are in WMV format and may require Windows Media Player 7 or above to display properly. The latest version of the Windows Media player can be downloaded for free from the Windows Media  website.

For optimum effect read the Diary Entry for day 1, below,  then go the the Day 1 Movies. Then use the link on the Movie page to return to the next days Diary entry on this page. Then follow the same procedure for day 2 and repeat the process through day 15.

 

Dear Diary

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Adam and Eve montage on the day of the hatching of Mi and Mishado. Eve covered the hatching chicks while Adam provided food for her before and after the downpour.

DAY 1 Monday May 6, 2002;

For me the whole of all creation began in what the giant ones call the month of May. Of course that is just for me. As I would later discover, I was just the latest newbie in a renewing process that has been recurring without perceptible change  through the ages. That is Me (Mi) over on the right ,just out of sight , emerging from my big blue chamber into the wonders of this world. My Sister,  Mishado,  will be emerging from her blue chamber, lying next to me, very  soon. Watching with extreme concern and assisting our entrance into this world,  are our proud parents, Adam and Eve.

My memories are vague, but it seemed at first in my blue chamber, that I was quite content and there was plenty of room for me. As the days passed  I began to sense changes in light and dark as the outside world light would filter through the blue chamber walls during the day when Adam or Eve was not covering us with their massive forms. Then slowly, day by day ,  I became more and more  aware of just how cramped my little world was, and finally on May 6, the blue chamber wall gave way to my struggles and then finally  I was free of that cramped world and suddenly I was aware of new sensations. The ache of hunger was ever present and being completely naked, with eyes tightly closed, shivering in the cold when ever Adam or Eve were not covering us with their soft down blankets.. Adam and Eve began the long and patient shuttle service of bringing in the food and making sure it went down our gaping beaks and throats. That is the first picture of Me over on the right. May is a good time to enter this world. Lots of great green worms and caterpillars. .

  Go to Robin Movies Day 1

 

 

 

Adam and Eve watching the hatching of Mi and Mishado

 Eve and First Picture of Mi

 

Day 2 Tuesday May 7, 2002

The first night of our being on earth is slowly giving way to a new day. Our eyes are not yet open but from under the soft down of Eve's orange breast, we are hearing for the first time the sweet morning sounds of other bird species as they herald the dawn. To me and Mishado, we now add those delights  to our growing awareness, which now include, warmth, cold, hunger, food is here clucks from Adam and Eve, and the peeping sounds we make, especially when there is a fullness feeling that goes away when some pressure within us is eased. Today our Parents begin in earnest the routine that all Robin parents have been doing through the ages. They are living now it seems only for me and Mishado. Eve spends most of the time snuggling us with her body which covers the nest. Occasionally she will stand up and prune herself, and let refreshing cool air bathe us. From nearby the now growing familiar clucks from Adam causes her to leave the nest and the next thing Father Adam is there signaling us with his gentle but firm sounds which triggers us to lift up our heads and open our beaks as wide as possible to receive the tasty morsels . Adam will also tidy up around us and remove any of our disposed food residual.  Adam does not stay long at the nest, and soon Eve returns, and continues the nest cleaning activities and soon covers us again. This process is repeated many times during this day. I sense some periods when neither are in or on the nest. Today Adam also removed what was left of the blue chambers we were hatched from. It felt good to have them gone as it is much more comfortable in the nest without them. New sounds from today, are wind sounds and the nest was moving around as the winds moved the boughs of the Yew, our birthplace. Also very loud noises from the giant one's machines. Several very noisy and very high above us and some very close to us as the giants ran their machines over the grass and close to our Yew. I was not afraid, because I have not experienced fear yet, but Eve seemed anxious as the machine sounds approached us. I am becoming more aware of life , and can feel myself getting stronger with each feeding cycle.  Mishado and I  are becoming a little less naked as a soft fuzz is forming on our bodies.  The wind caused the magic eye that watches over us to move and our giant came to our birthplace several times to readjust it. I know this  because Adam and Eve are very upset when he comes near to our nest.

Go to Robin Movies Day 2

 

 

 

Adam with a morsel for Mishado.

Eve covering Mi and Mishado and does a little pruning.

Day 3 Wednesday May 8, 2002

We snuggled under Mother Eve's warmth, through the dark time. As yesterday the first light of the new day filtered into the nest and brought the chorus of songs from the other birds which seemed  , to be singing just for me and Mishado. I am more aware of my sister being close to me as we are now becoming more covered with the soft down of emerging feathers to be. Since Eve keeps us warm, the two major sensations are hunger and that feeling of pressure that causes the used food to be expelled from our bodies. Both sensations are good and I am becoming aware of the faint peeping , that we make when both are satisfied.  Mother Eve stays with us most of the time and Father Adam brings us food every 15 minutes or so. Adam occasionally will cover us with his warmth , but mostly he brings the food and takes away the spent fuel pellets we present .The Giant's machines were quite noisy again today. Several times today we were left alone and the sunshine felt so good to us as we listened to the sound of the doves and the machines.

Go to Robin Movies Day 3

 

 

 

Adam, Mi and Mishado

Day 4 Thursday May 9, 2002

Today we, Mi and Mishado, are 4 days old. Just look how we have grown. We are not quite as helpless as even yesterday. We are able to thrash about rather well and we are now even hungrier. Adam and Eve have stepped up their feeding schedule to keep us satisfied and growing. They know how to do so much for us and later I will wonder just how they knew so much and then much later I would know. Today one worm was almost too much for me and both Adam and Eve had to help get it going just right and their patience was rewarded, and I think they did the equivalent of a giant one high five. Breezy today, and the magic eye that watches over us was moved, which prompted our giant to come to the nest and adjust it. As usual Adam and Eve did not like it at all.

Go to Robin Movies  Day 4

 

 

 

Family Portrait Day 4

Day 5 Friday May 10, 2002

It seems as if the nest is not quite as roomy as it was just a day or two ago. Mishado and I have just about perfected the routine of stretching our necks as far upward as we can and keeping our beaks open as wide as we can. It is so normal now for us that we in fact keep our beaks open most of the time, and we are always ready to gulp down the worms that both parents bring. It seems as if Mother Eve is spending more time cleaning our nest, pruning the two of us and moving us around in the nest. Sometimes we are left alone for a bit but today was very warm and it felt good to be uncovered. Today I heard a new sound and Mother Eve and I listened to the barking of a squirrel. I managed to get my head out from under Mother Eve while Mishado was lying behind me in the nest.

 Go to Robin Movies Day 5

 

 

 

A nice green worm for Mishado

Day 6 Saturday May 11, 2002

Things were different today. It was windy all day and our giant came to the nest to adjust the magic eye that watches over us several times. We continue to get stronger but it seems to me that our feeding times were less than yesterday. We heard new sounds today as one of the giant's who has ice cream for the giant's chicks was nearby . Mishado and I , lay silently and listened to the music. It was nice but I like the Morning Bird songs better. Today we felt water from the sky as our first rain touched us . Mother Eve covered the nest with her wings outside the nest and most of the rain rolled off and away from us.

Go to Robin Movies Day 6

 

 

 

Always hungry   Adam eyes his chicks

 Day 7 Sunday May 12, 2002

After the rain last night the temperature became much cooler. Today was a dark and cold day. Today is a special day for the Giant ones. It is Mother's Day and  Mother Eve spent much more time on the nest covering Mishado and Me. It felt so good to stay warm but it seems we stayed hungry today as worm delivery was cut back. Still we are growing fast and the nest is becoming more and more crowded with  me and Mishado spreading out. Our necks are longer and are raising our heads above the rim of the nest, but I can not yet see the world beyond our nest home. Most of the time when my neck is extended, my beak is wide open waiting for the worms, and  have not yet taken in  the big  outside world. Tonight Mishado and I, lay in the dark of the night and chattered for a while. Then a new sound to us, a barking dog, and we became still

Go to Robin Movies Day 7

Happy birthday. One week old

Day 8 Monday May 13, 2002

We (Mi and Mishado) continue to grow larger as the nest home seems to become much smaller. The food shuttle service is back in full swing but it never seems to quite be enough. We are getting much better at anticipating when food has arrived or is about to. Many times Mishado and I (MI) will spring up with neck stretched and beaks agape at the first sounds of anything that seems like Adam or Eve approaching. To the giant ones we must seem like their chicks jack in the box toys. Sometimes we only think we hear the signal and with no food we slowly recede back down into the nest. Most of the time though, there are worms to be gobbled. When Adam and Eve deliver food, they always extract the used food pellets that we deliver to them. Something happened with our giant today, that we could not know, but would would play a major role for the future of  Mi and Mishado. The Yellow shirted giant from the power company informed our giant that they would be doing some tree trimming around the power lines in a few days. Never mind,  all was well with us and life was good in our Nest home, in the Yew, under the big trees, not far from the branchless tree with the metal wires and cables on top.

 Go to Robin Movies Day 8

Family Portrait Day 8

Day 9 Tuesday May 14, 2002

Today was another wonderful day for Me and Mishado. Even though Mother Eve still covers us in the nest much of the time, it is becoming more and more difficult for her to hold us down. We are feeling the strength in our wings and legs and are eager to see what is beyond our small nest world. We are becoming very accomplished at knowing when the worms have arrived, by the clucks of our parents, or by the vibrations in the branches of our Yew home. We are so good at it that we sometimes have false starts and then we shrink back into the nest when there are no worms to fill our beaks. Our feathers are growing rapidly and we are beginning to look more like our parents, than of some prehistoric bird. There is no question that our day nine  pictures are much better than our baby pictures. Today's new sounds included the many songs of the Mockingbird, Giant One's  Emergency sirens from a highway nearby, and the sound of my own wings beating against the nest as I exercise them. I feel a longing to see what this world is about and we are now beginning our struggle to get ready for the journey to come.

Go to Robin Movies Day 9

 

 

 

Feed Me , Feed Me

Day 10 Wednesday May 15, 2002

Something new every day as Mishado and I are growing older and wiser. Mother Eve spends less time covering us on the nest each day as the nest is becoming smaller and smaller, or so it seems. Both of our parents, are busy keeping the worms coming and the nest tidy. Every food delivery also means they leave with a fecal sac from each of us. We have not quite learned fear completely but somewhere along the way we have developed the understanding of what we are to do when certain conditions are present. We hear our parents arrive with food and we stretch up as far as possible to receive the morsels. Then we compress back into the nest to deliver the fecal sacs. When Adam and Eve are neither  at the nest, which is becoming more frequent, we usually lie sleeping quietly, and now occasionally standing and flapping our wings. When Adam or Eve make the alarm sounds we have learned to be very very still and make no sound. Today a squirrel came near to the nest and Father Adam made such a commotion that he left very quickly. Our giant came to the nest to adjust the magic eye that watches over us and both Adam and Eve were very upset. Our giant came very near to us as the magic eye is very close to the nest. We lay still as Adam and Eve protested. Today we heard the tree cutting sounds of the giants with yellow shirts from the power company. They were close enough to hear but not close enough for Adam and Eve to be alarmed.  I like being in this world, but I have so much yet to learn.

Go to Robin Movies Day 10

 

 

Standard Operating Procedure

Thursday May 16 Day 11

Mishado and I, are spending more time flapping our wings and at times I can feel myself being lifted by their action. It is a good feeling and I am beginning to think that I am almost ready to venture out. Still life is good in the nest as the regular meal times keep on coming. When Adam and Eve are both gone from the nest, Mishado and I have alternate periods of sleeping and then exercising. We now can rest our heads sometimes on the edge of the nest and are beginning to see the world through the branches or our Yew.  Today Mother Eve covered us again when the sounds of a Blue Jay bird reached us and seemed very close to the nest. The giant ones grass cutting machines came near us again today, and our giant came to move again the magic eye that watches over us. Adam and Eve did their usual protesting and although I was not afraid, we did remain very still and quiet until their alarm screeching stopped. In the afternoon it became quite windy, and more windy than I have ever seen. The Yew branches and the nest were swaying wildly and to me and Mishado, it was great fun. The Yellow shirt giants from the power company did not come today. They would be here tomorrow.

Go to Robin Movies Day 11

 

 

Mi extends his wings in his exercise program.

Day 12 Friday May 17, 2002

Day 12 a very  scary day . Today I learned how to be afraid and the meaning of fear.  We were left alone in the rain, due to the giant ones in yellow shirts and Adam and Eve unable to return to the nest.  Mishado and I remained motionless in the nest as the thunder machines and yellow shirts did havoc to the tree limbs above. Although this lasted for most of the morning we did what we were supposed to do, we lay still, except for our shivering,  as we heard the giant one's voices and the limbs falling very close to us in our nest. The rain was falling down relentlessly and I think it caused the work to be halted and the sounds and the crashing stopped. Finally it was over  and Eve came quickly as the fear and  hunger need was overwhelming for  Mishado and me. When Eve came at first she had no food for us, wanting to make sure we were ok and to get us out of the rain. We were so happy when she came to us that we became almost hysterical with joy. Mother Eve covered us to protect us from the rain  and soon Adam brought the first meal we had  for many hours. The fresh worm morsels brought to us by Adam  were the best we ever tasted and then Eve covered us with her  soft bright red comforter and spread her wings to shield us from the falling rain. It was the most wonderful feeling I had experienced in my first 12 days of life.

Before the noise began, I had heard our giant's voice speaking with the yellow shirt giants. They were right over the nest and I believe our giant was asking them to be very careful so that the falling limbs would not come down on us. I believe if it were not for our giant and the magic eye that watches over us, we would have been injured or killed by the falling limbs on this day.

Go to Robin Movies Day 12

The Power Company tree trimmer foreman looks in on the nest. The camera is just to the left of the Yellow shirt just at the edge of the Yew

 .

Oh Glad Reunion --After the yellow shirts had left the nest area

 

Day 13 Saturday May 18, 2002

 It was good to have a peaceful normal day after the events on Friday. The rain continued well into last night and Mother Eve covered us through the night . This morning the rain stopped, but the temperature was much cooler. No yellow shirts and no falling tree limbs to dodge today. In all of the excitement we hardly noticed that we had almost grown too large for the nest. Even though today was not a rainy day Mother Eve stayed with us on the nest and in fact much of the time she would keep us more or less pinned down.  As I think back now, I am not sure if Mother Eve was doing it because of yesterday's events or if she was somehow just trying to make the most of what she must have known would be her last days with us. Mishado and I were restless and eager to explore and if Mother Eve were on top of us, and we decided to stand together, she could no longer hold us down. We moved around in the nest, flapped our wings, pruned our feathers, and came dangerously close to the rim of the nest as we struggled with our juvenile energies. She probably was attempting to keep us from falling out of the nest as she would have known we were not quite yet ready to survive out there. Both parents kept the food coming and the usual hygienic duties performed. We did not see our giant today, as the magic eye that watches over us did not move. I am becoming much more alert and have a feeling that I would like to fly like Adam and Eve. Maybe soon!

Go to Robin Movies Day 13

 

 

Eve, Mi and Mishado and a return to normalcy. No matter how short lived.

Day 14.  Sunday May 19, 2002.

Overnight cold in the 30's. Today Mishado and I are very active. We are feeling very strong now and doing a lot of standing, with wings flapping  and walking around the edge of the nest. Full feeding and Hygienic parent activities continue unabated today.  I would say on a one to one basis of feeding and removal.   Our cheeping sounds have turned to more of a chatter when being fed and we keep it up while we are alone. Sometimes we almost fall out of the nest. I feel that I could almost fly and am anxious to try it. I am waiting for Adam or Eve to signal that it is time. So leaving is greatly on all of our minds.

Another threat sent us into the play dead mode again.. We hunkered down into the nest as far as we could go and remained as still as possible. The limb of our Yew right above us was covered with a large black bird of another species and the nest began to shake up and down. Adam and Eve had been very excited just before this happened and their warning squawking triggered us to enter the play dead mode. The danger bird hopped to the fence post right above our nest home and remained their for a very long time. It was a very large crow and the sounds of an excited  and angry Blue jay joined the chorus of Adam and Eve. After a while our Giant came with a waving broom and the crow menace flew away. The giant once again reached in very close to us and moved the  magic seeing eye object that is always watching over us. Adam and Eve did not appear to give him much credit though as their alarm squawking continued.

Go to Robin Movies Day 14

 

 

Almost Ready to start a new life in the big World.

Day 15 Monday 5/20/2002

I am not sure if we were getting the signal from Adam or Eve that it was time to test our wings, but we surely received a signal. It was most surprising  very early on this morning to hear once again the voices and thunder machines of the yellow shirts. Our Giant was not expecting this to happen and the yellow shirts may have forgotten to watch out for our Yew home. At any rate the danger cries from Adam and Eve had us go into the play dead mode again , lying very still in the nest. It was different this time though as the trees above us were being trimmed, and the limbs were falling down and on our Yew. The noise was incredible and when the first limb hit our home, Mishado was so frightened that she sprang out of the nest and hopped out of the Yew. I could not see which direction she went. I tried to do as I had been instructed to do, but when another limb fell into our Yew, my instincts to run took over and I sprang up and fluttered my wings and for the first time in my life I was out in the big world. I did not know where any of my family was or where I was going but somehow I escaped the falling debris and managed to hop up into a low branch of another shrub away from the turmoil. I would sit here and wait for a very long time. I hoped that Mishado had avoided the falling limbs also, but I would not know for another day. So this is what it is like to be a real bird, I thought and strangely I was not as frightened as confused. Late in the afternoon Adam would find me and coax me to hop flutter to a higher branch. I would sleep this night , and all my  future nights on the limb of a tree and not in my nest. Tomorrow Adam would find Mishado and we would stay with father Adam  for two more weeks learning at last how to be real Robins. Our giant would not know that we had survived  for a couple of days, and then I know that he spotted the two of us following Adam as he hopped in the green grass teaching us how to look for our own worms. This giant had truly been our friend and with the magic eye that had watched over us for most of our lives, had played a role in the well being of Mi and Mishado.

Go to Robin Movies Day 15

 

 

Mi -the instant before he leaves the nest .

Mi clears the nest and the nest is empty for the first time in 30 days.

Giants Notes:

You can learn a lot from a bird family. I know a good bit more about Robins than I ever did before in my  first  67 years. The engineering expertise to build these nest is amazing and they all look like they were made from the same mold . The total dedication to their offspring and the way they work together and support each other is amazing and wonderful to behold. You know it seems  a lot like real love. While I was quite concerned about the manner of their nest departure, I also realize that they were really ready to go, and had the nest more chicks than just two , might have departed on their own on Sunday. I did verify within reason , at least to myself that both Mi and Mishado had survived as I saw two chicks following around a parent for several days after this learning how to be a Real Robins. Learning to find food on their own, Learning to fly and learning how to take a bath and frolic in the birdbath pool. I know it was them because they both had speckled spots on their backs and  orange breasts, :)  and of course I was sure that  I saw each of them wink at me.JJ

Mi with Adam at the Birdbath a few days after all the excitement . All's well that ends well.

 See also the  Story of 2004's Robin's nest With a very Different Outcome

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