Saturday, August 11, 2007

Empty Nest Syndrome

My children are all still schooling and already I am experiencing (literally) the empty nest syndrome. This morning my twins flew away without warning; but not without fanfare and drama though.

My wife was pottering around in the balcony, just next to the nest when one of the chicks suddenly flew out of its nest towards our neighbour’s bedroom. She panicked and ran downstairs to tell me. Like all anxious parents, we were wondering, would it be able to fly properly, or would it be stuck in our neighbour’s house. Meantime, the biological parents were making a racket in the garden. And then we spotted a young sunbird chirping among our pitcher plants. We knew it was one of the babies: but which one? I quickly ran upstairs to get my camera and even went quite close to take this shot (below), but still it remained there; fidgeting and chirping. And then it flew off.

sunbird baby - final (11Aug07)

We were in a fix. Was that no. 1 or no. 2? If it was no. 2, then no. 1 would still be in our neighbour’s bedroom. I rushed up to my balcony to check the nest, and was relieved to see a single chick in the nest. I moved closer to take a photo, but before I could take my second shot, it flew off. And thus bringing to an end our close encounter with the sunbirds which began here. In the meantime, the parents continued to chirp excitedly in our garden.

Chuck was right. We should have given the babies names. But then with only their heads sticking out, we could not tell the twins apart. Justcate was also right. Letting go would not be easy.

One question remains. What do we do with the empty nest?

Sunbird nest - empty (11Aug07)


JollyGreenP said...

I have been following your articles on the sunbirds with interest. I have just looked up about their nests on the net and found that they build the nest then dissappear for a week before returning to lay eggs. Nobody seemed to have an explanation as to why except to surmise it might be gestation of the eggs. I only found one site that mentioned that generally sunbirds build a new nest each year but there is a pair of copper throated sunbirds in Sungei Buloh that have used the same nest for several years running. URL for page :-

Information in Wikipedia on Olive Backed Sunbirds is rather limited.


Tom said...

Tom said...
Chun See, its good hear that the twins have flown the nest,I hope they live well, Chun See, can I take a few copes of the birds I hope you dont mind.

Lam Chun See said...

Sure Tom. You can download any of my photos. Just click on the photo and it will bring you to my Flickr account where you can download the photos directly into your computer.

Anonymous said...

If you leave the nest as it is, there's a chance it will be reused - happened to the one I had in my balcony.