Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bird Nests Flooded Out

For the second time this year our road to town is under water. The surrounding fields are flooded, most of them unseeded as well. Too much rain. Not even drying time. But we're not the only ones affected.

A week ago as I walked along the driveway, small birds flew up out of the grass. It got to be where I knew where their nests were. But this morning as I surveyed the water surrounding our farm, I realized the nests were about a foot down and the momma birds were nowhere insight.

Which got me thinking about an American coot couple (yes, that's a coot couple and not a cute couple, although they are cute). A pair of coots took up residence close to the corner where the driveway passes the shelterbelt. How had they fared with the flood situation?

Apr 25 - Height of the Spring Flood

May 6

May 7 - First sight of migration and nest building as waters decrease 

May 13 - Black dot is Coot looking for nest material

June 1 - Coot nest above water, below top of old Bullrushes

June 4 - Coot nest hidden amongst last year's bullrushes 

June 6 - Last years bullrushes have broken off and their litter shows the high water line 

June 22 - Recent downpours have filled the field and water covers the road.

June 22 - The nest has risen to the height of the bullrushes although I don't know how the coots do it. Only 3 nests are visible in the whole slough and all of them are American coots. 

I don't know how other nests have fared, but Nelson saw one duck with a tiny duckling trailing behind earlier today so I'm hoping the nests were hidden and spared.

Meanwhile, our basement is still flooding. Our dehumidifier broke down  - it was over 20 yrs old - and there's a shortage of them in the city due to all the flooded basements.

And yet, we're much better off than so many others. I heard on the TV tonight that the good folks down in Minot, ND will have to raise their dikes 8 feet to contain the Souris River. Eight feet!!! That's the height of a normal room. And then there's all the flooding in Manitoba. Och!

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