If there was any dought that Spring is in the air, there certainly wasn’t when I opened the car door and got swarmed with the Mayflies.
Walking from our cottage to the Warriors Cottage, I had to walk through roads of swarms. That’s not a mistypes, I said roads. They are so heavy this years that I had to put my hand over my nose and mouth when I was walking to keep from having them up my nose or swallowing’s them.
The Mayflies really aren’t the most pleasant thing about Spring, though the don’t bite, they sure leave a mess behind them when they all suddenly die and you have to sweep them up. Then there’s the getting in the house and having them sticking to you clothes and as I mentioned, being in your face when you are outside for anything. But, like everything, there’s some good things about Mayflies.
Their hatching happens over a few weeks but each one only live from hatching to death for 24 to 72 hours. In that time the Spring Birds fill-up on high protein meals to fatten up and get ready for laying. The heavier the population of Mayflies, means the healthier the water ways are and my favorite part, they arrive at the same time as the Purple Martins.
As I was standing waiting for a wood delivery at the Warriors Cottage, I looked up and seen the flock meet the swarm. Meaning I watched a flock of Purple Martins flying through the swam having themselves a high protein dinner. In-spite of having thousands of the Mayflies swarming around me, it made me happy to see the Martins back.
The next morning Christina and I were sitting in the cottage when I looked out the window to realized I had female Martins sitting in my tree. I took this as a subtle hint that we needed to get the birdhouses back up in the trees.
The next morning we hung half the birdhouses up in the Tree of Life.
Climbing in the tree to hang of the birdhouses caused an upset for Momma Dove who had already nested and hatched two chicks. She flew up in air in a thither and sat on a telephone line watching what we were up to. Once the guys were done messing with her tree she returned to see we had done no harm and retook her position sitting on her nest.
Within two hours of putting the birdhouses up, I got to share the house selecting process with Christina.
As we sat and watched, the first of the two females flew from house to house looking inside each hole before selecting which house she wanted. While she made her selection, the second of the two sat on a branch and waited. After she had chosen her house, the second who was smaller and I am guessing younger, repeated the pattern selecting her home.
In a short period of time we watched them return with grass in their beaks and entering the houses, then leaving again to return the with more grass. This process filled the Martins day.
Next weekend we will be hanging more house that still needed some adjustment made to them. Only these ones won’t be going up in the Tree of Life. Instead, they will be going in another tree on the property. The nesting process has begun and we don’t want to upset Momma Dove again or the new families who moved in to the Birdhouse Condos in the Tree of Life.
We’re learning as we go along on how to be good Birdhouse Landlords. This year we learned, if Spring comes early so does the nesting. Which means I should start doing my repairs in February not March which Momma Dove has made very clear. Lesson learned.