2022—Waiting for the Bubble

Most of the birds in my backyard are tiny. Not just small but tiny like the Anna’s Hummingbirds, the Lesser Goldfinches, and these, the irresistibly adorable Bushtits. The Bushtits are a brigade that descends on the fountain with enthusiasm and joy when they bathe. The fountain has not been working properly recently so the bubble of water that draws them to the fountain was not a bubble. I finally fixed it and I’m hopeful that it will stay fixed during my travels but the reason for its intermittent performance is my nemesis, a neighborhood cat whose owners I have yet to identify. The cat lurks in the shrubs near the fountain and pounces on it when the opportunity presents itself, knocking it off balance and preventing the bubble from emerging. This is a relatively small number of Bushtits bathing at once. There are frequently more than a dozen gleefully splashing there, sticking their heads straight into the bubbling water as they take turns. If I walk out and sit in front of the fountain with my camera as I did for this photograph, they will flee to the safety of the surrounding shrubs, then when I’m settled and still, one by one they return to the business at hand.