Heavens, but the bluebirds are dumb.
We love our little azure bits of bliss, and go to great lengths to provide them with their favorite flavors of suet. They flutter berylline around the feeders, uncertain how to cling and unwilling to reach through the mesh to the fat inside.
Surely they are not afraid of small openings. The opening to their nesting box is more narrowly circumscribed.
They perch on the railing of the deck and nearby brackets and observe downy woodpeckers and tufted titmice scoot through the mesh and suck down suet in the protected precincts of the “squirrel-proof” feeder. When it is their turn they scrabble helplessly at the wire, he electric in the sun, she a subtler bice, and leave unfulfilled.
When the red-bellies swoop in, the bluebirds demonstrate a certain opportunistic intelligence. They hang out in the garden below, catching suet lumps dislodged by the woodpeckers’ greedy stabbing. Then they return to their ineffectual jabs and grabs, wings beating as their feet search for somewhere to cling.
We adore these denizens of field and hedgerows. I listen to them in the early light while still abed and watch rapt as they collect grass soft and fine to line their nest. We follow their cerulean flight from tree to fence to nesting box and beyond.
But they are just bright blue dopes.