I spent a good chunk of time this weekend watching our Carolina Wren pair making a nest in our hanging basket. In and out they went, adding leaves, pine needles, rootlets, and moss, never seeming to tire of the task, even when it was pouring rain. They worked on it all day Saturday and much of Sunday.
It’s amazing when I consider what they’ve been through this year.
Their first nest was built on the top of our propane tank–a marvelous place it seemed since predators wouldn’t likely be able to climb the smooth tank to reach it but after only one egg, they abandoned it. This was way back in early spring and on a morning after temperatures were in the 30’s so perhaps the egg got too cold.
Not daunted, the wren pair rebuilt in the bowl beneath our ceiling fan on our front porch, but that too was abandoned before any eggs were ever laid. (Much to the relief of my husband who was imaging weeks without being able to use the fan or the light.)
Then they built another nest in the lovely container I put up for them that I had bought at Michaels. I was jumping for joy when I saw their messy nest in my humble offering. Sadly, when the 5 tiny babies were only four days old, something ate them. We discovered the empty nest –the box still neatly on the wall–and were saddened by the loss. It is heartbreaking to be involved in their progress only to check on them one day and find them all gone–likely someone’s breakfast. At least I know it wasn’t one of our cats.
If it were me I’d have wanted to give up at that point. 3 tries and 3 failed attempts! Nature can be so cruel sometimes, though I realize everyone has to eat.
The pair however, seemed undeterred, building their fourth nest of the season in our hanging basket.
The nest is a masterpiece, with a deep tunnel down through the center of the flowers. They enter and exit with the precision of a fighter pilot, hardly noticeable unless you happen to be staring at it. Which I did often this weekend. It was fascinating to see what they brought and how quickly they assembled the nest.
Their resilience is remarkable. Time and time again, they have failed and yet, time and time again, they look around for a new spot and then go about rebuilding. And the male sings his song, again and again, from every post in our yard, announcing his commitment to this as his home. He sounds joyful, his melodious song filling the morning air and making my soul smile. I believe I can learn a lot from this wren pair–about moving on after failure and never, ever giving up. (Read another post about what else we can all learn from the wrens.)
And that brings me to today’s quote:
What lessons have you learned lately from Mother Nature?