backyard pets

  • July 16, 2011

So I’ve got these pets in the yard.  So far I have a rabbit, robins, goldfinches, flickers, house finches, wrens, and of course sparrows.  Of all of these, the sparrows have been my least favorite.  They aren’t particularly pretty, they don’t have a very nice song, they make a wicked mess at the bird feeder, they’re territorial and chase off some of the more attractive birds… really just not very likable yard pets.  Until today.

I knew it would be super hot out today so this morning I filled up my rockpile fountain.  (It loses water over time and so I have to fill it periodically to keep it running.)  I knew the birds liked the fountain – I’ve seen them bouncing around it, flitting in and out, drinking and sitting in the cool shade under the various overhangs.  What I didn’t know was how much they actually enjoy playing in it.

I set up my camera on a tripod, connected my remote control, and camped out inside the patio doors to wait.  I didn’t have to wait long.  Almost the same second the door closed, the birds were at the fountain.  A family of sparrows.  Some fluffy babies, a bunch of adult females, and one adult male.  (Apparently he’s into polygamy.)  I took close to 150 photos in a matter of minutes!  They danced in and out of the water, taking turns in the spray and jockeying for prime positions.  The babies loved sitting right in the stream, getting soaked until they couldn’t fly, while the adults preferred just to drink from the edges and keep an eye on the babies.  I haven’t been so entertained in a long time!  I guess I’ll have to rethink that “least favorite yard pet” thing…

Filed Under : Animal Portraiture