Day three, and I was sure the our little family of killdeer had moved away, but there they were, just outside our door, huddled under Mom until she got tired (or hungry) and walked away. All four babies were still alive and perky. We were really excited because as you can see, they were so close.
The babies even came right up to the door.
But then, they walked around the corner of the building toward the parking lot. Luckily, we have another large window there and we could watch the babies sorting through the rocks for insects, grubs, and worms.
But did you notice? One of the babies is torturing us as he prances along the rim of the drainage grate. I was ready to run out there and save him.
He seemed to grow tired of messing with us and followed Mom across the parking lot. Dad was already back in the grass where they had been huddling for the last two days, and babies 1 through 3 obediently followed him home, but not baby 4.
Oh no. Baby 4 was suddenly fascinated with road.
I knew it was baby 4. He's been trouble from the beginning.
Anyway, he ran back and forth. In and out of the street while Mom tried to get him to follow her to safety. He refused to listen to reason and darted across the road. You could almost see Mom's wings sagging as she followed him. A minute later, the rest of the family made the dangerous journey.
I'll pause here to say that I don't work in a rural area. We were on the edge of a city, in an industrial park with a road pounded by big trucks between the babies and safety. Mom knew best, but oh no, baby 4 is trouble.
Keep in mind the babies are running nearly as fast as the adults, but they have trouble hopping curbs.
Baby 4 and another made it safely to the yard across the street, but two were frantically pacing the curb as truck after truck thundered past. I couldn't take it any longer. I ran outside and prepared to run in front of a semi truck. I'm serious. If one of the babies had left the curb and headed back, I was ready to run into traffic. I don't know how long I was out there, but finally, I couldn't take it any more. I left the babies to their fate. Mom and Dad were on it. I'm just a big, ugly human.
Now do you see where my ideas come from? If you think I relate strongly to a nest of baby birds, imagine what I can do inside the head of a dragon. Wait.
Don't imagine, leave that to me and Read Cairn: A Dragon Memoir.
We haven't see the family since that morning. Sadly, this concludes the saga of the baby killdeer, but there's more baby adventures to come in a few days.