Last month, I wrote in this post about our experience of being landlords to a colony of sparrows. I told how we'd finally taken the time to take all of the birdhouses apart and clean out a couple of years' worth of nest accumulation. I went on to say that when we were finished, I had taken some scraps of batting and put them on the floors of the houses, hoping to provide a soft foundation for the occupants' winter use.
I was proud. I felt virtuous. Not only was His eye on the sparrow, but so was mine!
I was in for a surprise.
They didn't like the batting. They really didn't like the batting.
First we found one of the batts on the ground. We thought I had cut one too many and dropped it. But then we found another. And one day Joe saw the event pictured above: The occupants of that birdhouse were pulling the batt out of the house!
One sparrow couple worked so hard to get it out, but it got stuck in the door hole and was there for a couple of days.
We intervened. We pulled it the rest of the way out. And then checked to remove the batts from the other houses. We want happy tenants. We didn't know. We were trying to help. We were foolish.
On Monday of this week, all at once, we saw sparrows flying back and forth, hauling dried grasses and things to the door holes. It was time to start their winter nests.
Without any help from the landlords.