Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Wren, Again


We did get some rain last night! Hallelujah! It didn't last long, but it came down fairly hard for a short time after dark and I swear I could feel the world sigh. All the plants and animals seemed to release a degree of tension. Of course, it was really me releasing that tension, but I'm sure the creatures appreciated the rain too.

I tried to take a video but it was too dark. There's a 97 percent chance (!) of more rain today and tomorrow -- in fact the experts are saying there's a danger of localized flooding because the ground is baked so hard -- so I'll have another opportunity.

Most of yesterday remained stubbornly dry and sunny. Dave came home around noon and I showed him the sad state of the garden, where the crocosmia have turned brown and the lower fronds of the tree fern have crisped up like oven-baked kale. He then slept much of the afternoon, while I sat out in the garden reading "The New Yorker" and probably being bitten by more insidious flower bugs.

Remember the little wren from a few days ago? Well, it was back, peeping madly from the underbrush. This time, I didn't see the parent. The baby fluttered from bush to bush, working its way around the garden in a circular pattern and making a heck of a lot of noise. I wonder if the parent finally said, "OK, it's time for you to fend for yourself," and took off. (The bird equivalent of, "Get a job!")

It was hard not to feel bad for that little thing, looking so lost.




But I'm sure it will be fine. This is nature. Mama bird wouldn't have left if she didn't think baby could manage on its own.

In the afternoon, I gave the banana tree a good spray-down with the hose, hopefully washing away much of the spider-mite infestation. I'm counting on the rain over the next few days to do the same all over the garden.

My bug bites, meanwhile, continue to itch like mad. I went to the pharmacy and picked up some Anthisan insect bite cream, but I don't think it's super-effective. I might need some hydrocortisone. Or maybe I just need to endure until they heal. They feel slightly better than they did a few days ago.

Today is my last day of summer vacation! Honestly, I'm ready to get back to work and think about something other than insects and watering.

26 comments:

Rachel Phillips said...

Your bites may have need of cortisone I agree. Anthisan is best applied immediately, not after a few days of scratching when something else is called for. Use Anthisan for new bites.

River said...

Yes, try the hydrocortisone. Anything to stop the itch. When I have itching hives I scratch, then douse them with undiluted antiseptic. It stops the itch, for me anyway.

Frances said...

I just looked it up again.....re heat on bites....it " overwhelms the nerve endings". another suggestion I read is to heat up a spoon and press on the offending bite!
We didn't get any rain. I looked at my radar rain app at about 7.45 and it looked as if you might be getting some then, but good that you got some later. Fingers crossed for today!

Yorkshire Pudding said...

Dave is a bad boy! He should follow the Reed method of fighting jet lag. No falling asleep on the sofa! Just battle through the tiredness until bedtime in order to get back into your normal routine.

Ed said...

We received about a third of an inch of rain yesterday in a half day long drizzle. I have never been so giddy about a trivial amount of rain. I haven't mowed my lawn in three weeks but I just may give it a trim to celebrate.

Debby said...

Do you know Icy-Hot gel? Get some of that. Store it n the fridge actually. Slather it on the affected area. It also confuses the nerve endings and disguises the itchy sensation. I also keep a tub of it on hand for that very reason. Hope it helps.

Pixie said...

What a beautiful little wren. Great shots.

Bob said...

I feel like your summer vacation just started and now it's over???

You must feel it ran by even faster!

Ms. Moon said...

When we were in Cozumel once, over the ten days or so we were there, we watched a fledgling black bird go from being entirely mama-fed to getting his own food. He was as big as she was and NOT happy about the transition.
I really can't believe you're already going back to work. I don't know about you but it seems to me like you just finished up collecting all the overdue books!
Thank goodness for your rain.

ellen abbott said...

Wrens, they are loud aren't they? They have a little flat donut shaped thing back behind the beak that somehow enhances the sound. I imagine it will soon get hungry enough to start looking for bugs on it's own. What a relief the rain is. We've gotten some but still need more.

Ellen D. said...

Sorry you are still itching! Hope you get relief soon. I guess getting back to work will keep you out of the garden more and safe from the bugs! Best of luck for a great school year!

gz said...

Our garden is looking relieved...as well as the indoor pot plants, which have had 24 hours out on a bench!

Red said...

Summer vacation over! It seems like school just got out.

The Bug said...

I'm glad you got some rain! Today traffic was busier than usual on the way to work so I wondered if our schools have started back. Weird to be so divorced from that era of my life that I have no idea - ha!

Mary said...

When you've got itchy bug bites, it is hard to think about anything else. Definitely get some hydrocortisone cream. Hope being at work provides you with enough distraction to fend off the itchies.

NewRobin13 said...

That little wren is so adorable. It's going to be so happy when it figures out that it can get food for itself.
I'm wondering if your bug bites are really some kind of rash and not insect related at all. Mmmm?
Enjoy your last day of summer vacation!

Sharon said...

Oh that poor little wren. It does look lost. I'm glad to hear you got some rain. I hope you get more today. Enjoy your last day of vacation!

Linda Sue said...

Aww wren still has a baby face. But then, when my maternal instincts kick in I am ridiculous...I probably go against what nature intends.
Back to work, WOW that was quick!

Boud said...

I've seen wren parents do a bit of supplementary feeding when the baby's a bit slow on the uptake.

That pressing the spoon on bites is an old Italian grandma remedy. Never worked for me though.

What happened to going back in the second week of September? Has climate change affected the school calendar?

Barbara R. said...

Sweet little wren. Sorry you are back at work, some kind of selling the worth of your time and talents in exchange for the means to purchase your needs. Been there, done that! I've now retired twice, and wonder what the future use of my time and talents will be...

Kelly said...

Wow, time flies! When do the kids start back? I hope you have a good year.

Margaret said...

Cortisone cream has always worked well for me. Hope that the beginning of the school year goes well. Those transitions were always difficult for me.

jenny_o said...

Those bug bites have really caused problems for you. The spoon method, as it was told to me at least, involves heating a spoon in hot water and then putting it on the bites -- the heat kills the protein that causes the itch. With a lot of bites, I don't know how practical this solution is. I never found calamine lotion to help but maybe it helped most bites, just not all of them. And what about an oatmeal bath? Or a baking soda bath? (1/2 cup b. soda in the tub of water) I hope you can find something that works!

I especially enjoyed the blog titles yesterday and today :)

Steve Reed said...

Rachel: Don't worry, I didn't buy the Anthisan just on your recommendation. It's also what my Pharmacist gave me. I'll have to go back and beg for something stronger.

River: What antiseptic do you use? I find applying an ice cube stops them itching for a while.

Frances: I'm surprised you didn't get any rain on Monday evening! I hope you got some yesterday. I have noticed that I have an urge to apply heat/cold to the itchy spots, and I guess that's why -- my body knows it will stop the itch.

YP: Well, I guess we all cope in our individual ways, but I agree! I think you've got to power through and get back on schedule.

Ed: That is the perfect kind of rain -- slow and soaking. Our lawn looks like hell but sadly mowing won't do a thing at this point.

Debby: I've never heard of that! I wonder if we have it here?! I'll look.

Pixie: Thanks. I did feel bad for it.

Bob: In some ways, yes, it seems to have gone by quickly, but I really am ready to go back to work.

Ms Moon: I've seen blackbirds go through the same process here. I remember watching a baby badgering its mother endlessly, like an adolescent pleading for more allowance.

Ellen: I suspect the mother is still somewhere around, keeping an eye on things. But yes, I suppose the baby will manage.

Ellen D: Exactly! There are no bugs in the library! (At least I hope not.)

GZ: I'm going to put more of our houseplants outside for the summer, starting next year!

Red: Doesn't it?! It always goes fast.

Bug: It IS funny how the school calendar is such a huge thing for so many people, but those of us with no children can dwell in happy obliviousness. (Unless we work in education!)

Mary: I think it will help having something else to think about!

Robin: It's possible there's some allergic reaction going on as well. I do seem to have an awful lot of bites for an insect that I've only seen momentarily on my skin. I've been known to get hives from sun exposure, but I don't think I've been out in the sun THAT much.

Sharon: I want to tell it to stop looking around aimlessly and instead look for bugs!

Linda Sue: I'm glad everyone else seems to think my summer vacation went by fast. That validates my own feeling that it did!

Boud: The students aren't back yet, just the staff. The kids come back at the end of the month. I hope Mama Wren is still out there keeping an eye on things. It was interesting that I didn't see her at all when I watched the baby. She's really hanging back.

Barbara: Well, that's the way the world works, right?! We trade our time and talents for sustenance, one way or another!

Kelly: A week from this coming Monday, I believe. I'd have to look at the calendar to be sure. And I think it's staggered between middle, high and lower school so they don't all start on the same day.

Margaret: The only thing I hate is all the meetings. Endless, endless meetings.

Jenny-O: Glad you liked my little headlines! I'm actually a terrible headline writer. I think I just have to give these bites time to heal. Being at work and distracted will help, hopefully.

Moving with Mitchell said...

Oh yeah, I'd be moving on to hydrocortisone.

Jeanie said...

The wren song is my favorite. I love it!

I'm sorry about the bites still bothering so much. I'd go for the hydro-cort sooner rather than later.