The New Visitors

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[ A peacock – in OUR yard? ]

August 30 – Just a week ago, we had heard that our neighbor had been given two PEACOCKS as the former owners complained about the noises they made at any time of day or night. In order to keep the peace, the owner donated the birds to our friend. (His neighbors also heard the strong shrill sound made by the peacocks!)

We had heard the story before we saw the birds, so when they showed up at OUR house, we knew who owned them! When it was time to go back home that evening, the peacocks decided they would rather stay here to find out what’s going on in this “neck of the woods!”

As we closed the garage door for the night, we really wondered if we would see the birds around somewhere in the morning. Guess what? Not only were the peacocks still at our address, but they didn’t race away when they saw us as we opened the garage door for the day.

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[ Staying in the shadows ]

All day long they stayed, investigating things they might have missed the day before, or checking out where they might find food. I tried to take some pictures, but it seemed as if they were mostly in the shadows made by the branches on the three maple trees. Oh, well, I was still pretty well pleased that I had anything to show what had come to visit with us! The bigger bird even flew up into the big box that holds food in the winter.

I don’t know where they spent the night, but I wasn’t too surprised to find them over in the field by the barn. Not once did they come close to the garage! Our grandsons and their friend drove over in the afternoon, and I quickly asked Rob if he would take a pic for me. Sure he would. However, the peacocks were so far away behind the barn, that it was a bit hard to tell which bird was in the picture. At least Rob tried!

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[ Peacocks on the roof ]

That night I tried to get near enough to the birds to take at least a halfway-good picture. No luck! When I would get a little closer, the birds would hurry away. After all, they didn’t know me any better than I knew them! However, I did hope to find some way of talking to them. Everything came to the fore as I tried so hard! I remembered hearing someone say once or twice that you can communicate with birds and animals if you are patient and keep talking to them in a kindly way.

So what did I say? In a sweet voice? “Hello, there peacocks, you sweet birds who don’t really know where you live. C’mon over to see me! I’ve never seen such a beautiful blue color before, and I think that makes you pretty special. If you would come over I would pet you, but right now I would be satisfied if you would just get close enough that I could take your pictures.”

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[ Peacocks like Cheerios? Who knew! ]

Nice promise, but I didn’t have a speck of faith that either of the peacocks would agree with my request. However, the next day brought a real surprise. Those birds were still back by the garden when I opened the garage door. I wondered if I put some food on the driveway, they might come up to see what was going on. I chose to use Cheerios. I tossed them out so bits and pieces were everywhere and if the birds wanted to eat them, they’d have no trouble. But neither bird came up until after we had gone back inside.

Glancing out the window I could see them heading in our direction. Hooray, they were eating the cereal as if it were going out of style. Their bills went through the food until it was just about eaten up. Well, if they liked the cereal, maybe they would like some out-of-date potato chips? They must have been hungry, because they cleaned that up, too.

One last bit, as they must be getting filled up, so down to the basement I went to get a can of whole kernel corn! No guessing allowed this time. After eating up about half that corn, they were done except to get out to the birds’ water dish to wash it all down! Now that they were satisfied, the larger peacock flew up into the bird feeder box and settled down for a little rest after his hard work. The smaller one just moved over to the cool cement under the feeding box and settled in for a quiet day.  (more tomorrow…) – CHRIS

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