Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Creative Problem Solving in Passer domesticus

OK. Say you're a young female House Sparrow, living at the wind-blown edge of Lordsburg, Hidalgo County, New Mexico. Tumbleweed country... the sort of gritty, lonesome place evoked by a distant train whistle at night. And you're confronted with a problem: specifically, you need a good piece of real estate for building your dream nest.

Ideally, what amenities are you looking for?

√ Protection from predators, such as Ringtails and free-roaming cats
√ People coming and going to discourage the shyer raptors
√ A roof that protects the nest from wind, sleet, rain, and hot sun
√ A little elevation, for the view
√ Dining room immediately below, in the form of a fast-food parking lot
√ Warmer at night than your average shrub
√ Lights at night to attract bugs
√ In the wee hours, the soothing sounds of the aforementioned train whistle and passing rumble of Amtrak
√ Price is right
√ And, along with everything else, love plays a prominent role

Line points to House Sparrow at nest (Photo by Narca)

It's possible that Love's has not applied for a permit for an Additional Dwelling Unit, and if any county in the US cares, that would be Hidalgo County... so mum's the word!

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