Ducklings in the Snow!

At the end of February, as you all know, it was a “Winter Wonderland”… especially if you did not have to drive anywhere! We took a walk around the compound taking a few photos, especially of the inside ponds.

Later, as it was getting dark, we were relaxing when Rob calls me to the kitchen. There were ducklings (7 of them) with mama walking across our patio, from our pond to the neighbour’s. We just gawked with surprise, and by the time we could grab our iPad, mama and 7 little ones had disappeared… then the 8th rushed out of the water, and here he (or she) is!

Duckling #8 trying to catch up to her family (on Basia and Rob's back patio)!
Here is duckling #8 trying to catch up to her family (on Basia and Rob’s back patio)!

Did anyone else see them? We think it is a bit early. Will they survive? Don says duck down is very warm, and they will survive (phew!).

Contributed by: Basia – Unit 62

Harriet the Hummingbird Homesteading at Huntly Wynd

An Invited Guest

We have had a guest visiting us again throughout the winter… here at Huntly Wynd.

We now understand that she has invited more of her kind to visit all of us here as well.

Her name is Harriet and she is a hummingbird. Harriet is full of energy and enjoys the company of other hummingbirds. Harriet does not like crows and they do not like her.

Harriet grudgingly accepts the company of residents who occupy their patios in the summer months.

Earlier this month (March), we could see Harriet flying back and forth into the Rhododendron that is at the back of our unit, across the fast-flowing stream. We ventured outside to see what all the commotion was about. As we approached the stream, Harriet came flying out of the Rhodo and sat on my head. We quickly backed up and retreated to our kitchen.

Armed with our trusty iPhone, we took the photo below. There in the crook of a branch stretched over the stream was Harriet sitting on her nest.

From above, an umbrella of leaves conceals Harriet the hummingbird as she sits nestled in her tiny yet perfect nest quilted together with lichens and plant fibers.

The nest was so tiny, yet so perfect. It was almost impossible to see. It looked like another bump on a branch. From above, an umbrella of leaves conceals it and protects it from the elements. And from the side, it looks like a tiny knot, quilted with lichens and plant fibers.

This velvety cup is likely cradling one to two eggs that will hatch hopefully in the next week or two. The juvenile hummingbirds will leave the nest two to three weeks after they hatch.

We hope that Harriet and her offspring will visit us this summer.

Contributed by: Ken and Sue  – Unit 13