The Added Bonuses

Every spring when the garden and landscape start to come alive, I always find an added bonus that makes this time of year even more special. Sometimes these bonuses keep giving throughout the weeks or even months as new and unexpected surprises play out.

The Apple Tree Bonus

The Added Bonus - Our Fuji Apple Tree
Our Fuji apple tree, home to our backyard spring bonus.

I was sitting on our patio, enjoying the warm sunny afternoon when I notices a mockingbird working in and around our yard. This isn’t unusual as we are often hosts to mockingbirds, blue jays, robins and other assorted winged wildlife.

However, this mockingbird caught my attention as she returned several times to one of our small apple trees. This caught my attention because I thought she might be working the apple tree for some kind of insect that was inhabiting the tree.

I started to go and examine the apple tree and pulled up short when I realized that the mockingbird was not hunting insects. She was sitting on a next just above head height in the thick of the apple tree leaves.

I Try to Be Patient

I sat and watched her for several minutes. She wasn’t leaving the nest to my chagrin so I had to exercise patient. Later that evening, she left the nest and the backyard. I took the opportunity to grab a step stool and try to get a glimpse into the nest without disturbing things.

I managed to get high enough to peek into the nest and found two blue eggs. I immediately ran into the house, got my camera and returned to my makeshift naturalist perch to snap a few pictures.

With the pictures taken I moved back to the patio and found not two, but four eggs in the nest. Over the course of the next few hours, the mockingbird came back to check on the nest periodically but by the time she returned for the evening it was too dark for photos.

The Added Bonuses - In the nest
In the apple tree nest, four mockingbird eggs

Over the next few weeks I hope to document the rise of the new mockingbird family in our backyard. Stand by for updates and more pictures.