Spring Babies, Blog Update

 “Just living is not enough…one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.” ~ Hans Christian Andersen

A Personal Note

We are officially ‘off’ for the summer with lots to be done — and savored — off-line. New posts will lag for the time being, and though I strive to keep to once-per-week writing, I never promised posts would all be new.

So, for you email followers… Reading from within your inbox, you may have noticed fewer posts arriving. This is because I’ve been re-posting from the archives. It is a lazy blogging effort on my part and won’t result in anything landing in your inbox. (They’ve already been delivered, remember?)

For you registered WP bloggers… Some posts showing up in your WP or RSS Reader will be from previous years — I call it ‘up-cycling.’ New content will be mixed in with others. Don’t forget to check specific tags like garden or vegan or birds, depending upon why it is you followed DirtNKids in the first place. Four years of blogging makes for a lot of posts, and there’s plenty here to be read and viewed regardless of my time away.

In short, I’m not going anywhere! Continue to interact here however you like, and I will continue to reply back. We will simply be immersing ourselves into summer — with all its organizing, lazing, exploring, learning, growing — much as you will be with yours. But enjoying every moment to its fullest means ‘unplugging’ in the most general sense.

~ Shannon @ DirtNKids Blog, 5/29/2015

Smith Oaks Rookery – Water Babies

During our week-long trip to the coast recently, we braved the mosquito onslaught to see some babies that we might never see otherwise. What we saw was worth the quick run in and quick run out (mosquitoes don’t land on running bodies).

This mini-island in the middle of a mini-freshwater lake in the middle of a salt marsh estuary is a favorite among Great Egret, Roseate Spoonbill, and Neotropic Cormorant to nest and procreate. It is a raucous nursery, feathered babies squawking and grunting loudly over each other to get parents to fill never-satisfied gullets.

We also spotted a few cute little fuzzy black baby Purple Gallinule down in the reeds, but they would not cooperate with the camera. Mama kept them well-hidden from view, as a good mama should.

It was all Awww! and So cute! at every stop, what with the fuzzy little baby heads everywhere we looked. Too bad the mosquitoes were relentless or we might have stayed longer.

Snowy Egret

Baby Cattle Egret

Great Egret

Baby Great Egret and Parent

Roseate Spoonbill (Female and Chicks)

Baby Roseate Spoonbill with Family

More Babies Around the House

Remember the wren who built his nest in the clothespin hanger on the back porch? Here’s the animated GIF of it I did for a previous post:

Just a week later or so, Mr. Dirt unwittingly dumped his masterpiece out in the yard, not realizing that he was building this to attract a mate. He felt bad about it after the fact, but the damage was done: Mr. Wren went and built another one somewhere else, out of our sight. Never mind it was probably the better thing to do (we do have a roaming cat in the hood), but by the time we realized wren babies resulted, we were watching them mid-story in the crepe myrtles behind our house, fledged and flying already.

Danggit if we missed the whole thing. But baby’s cuteness somehow makes it all better.

Baby Carolina Wren

While we were finishing up the last few days of school in the classroom upstairs, Mr. Eastern Bluebird flew in with his four offspring to give a bath lesson. He carefully demonstrated for them how to get all the hard-to-reach spots, urged them into the pool, then left them to splash and frolic unattended. It was as if someone had turned the bird bath into a water sprinkler.

By the time I got my camera, there was only one baby left. But man, was he clean!

Baby Eastern Bluebird

At the local stables, a friend invited us to see the new colt born just a week before, still fuzzy, clumsy, and curious.

Baby Clydesdale

The three rabbits that share our indoor space are all males. They’ve also been neutered. So…how is it these guys keep multiplying? Their offspring are positively everywhere.

Baby [Dust] Bunny


Happy Summer, everyone!

16 thoughts on “Spring Babies, Blog Update

  1. Those spoonbills, WOW! We sure don’t have anything like that on the West Coast. But unfortunately those dust bunnies aren’t endemic only to your area, I’ve got them like crazy over here!


    1. The spoonbills are an interesting bird for sure. A face only a mother could love! Good to see you Melissa. I was just sharing your water barrel project, which is a fantastic DIY to say the least. After the 3rd drencher in as many days (11″ in 4 hours? Really?) I gave up catching any more reserve. We resorted to digging instead — beefing up drainage away from the house. I think we got all of Cali’s rain in one week.


      1. Sadly we never got enough to fall to fill my barrels, even part way, but at least I’ll be ready by next year! I think that the problem of always not enough or way too much is the new norm! Good to be prepared for both!


      2. If that barrel system was in my yard, it would be full to the scuppers by now! Our rivers are still super high. It’s strange to watch interstate access roads disappear under them.


    1. Thank you, Christy! I somehow knew Mr. Wren would tickle your fancy. He’s up to his old tricks again, same bag on the back porch as well as two locations in the garage. I guess he’s hedging his bets! Hoping to come by this evening for a good long blog read on my favorite birdie poet.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. We were just talking about visiting BBSP once the river recedes. You know it’ll be a mess at first, but the wildlife will love it.

      We’re dry! But our creek is super-high. Thankfully still 5 ft to spare before breaking the banks. But since it drains to the Brazos…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. We were on the coast when the big drencher hit. Eleven inches in four hours!! Thus far, no water issues, but the Brazos has yet to crest. I think it’s worse up there by you. I was pleased to see you’re wet but not dunked.

      It was something getting hit by gale force winds in a beach home 25 ft in the air. Felt like an earthquake with every gust.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yikes! That sounds scary. We’ve been fortunate where we are in Georgetown — just a very, very soggy backyard. We don’t live close to any rivers, so no flooding issues.

        Glad to hear you made it through the heavy rainstorms. Hope it stays that way.


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