Before I go down to get my mower parts, I call to see if they’re in. Yes, they’re in now I can get some work done. I go down get the parts, then go to Ruidoso to get my other belt, and some meds for my father. More than half the day is gone when I finish my running around so I elect to put things together in the morning. I was getting ready to bring the mower up to the garage looking at the new parts, and something just didn’t look right, so I get the old mandrill to compare it to the new one, and wouldn’t you know the new one is about 2” shorter than the old one. I swear someone just doesn’t want me to mow down those weeds. I take both the old, and new mandrills to Randy with my book. He just shakes his head, and goes back to the computer. He finally finds the correct part, and yes it will take another four days for it to come in. That puts it at Monday before I can hopefully get my mower back together. I can’t believe this. All I want to do is what everyone else has already done. Keeping grasses, and weeds mowed down is imperative for fire prevention. Even the county mows all the roadsides. Besides all the tall grasses etc. make a place look unkempt. Oh well, such is life at least such is my life.
I did make some discoveries. The other day while watching our hummingbird wars a bird happened to fly between the trees the hummingbirds gather in, and their feeders. I have seen the hummingbirds fight each other, but have never seen one of them take on a larger bird. Well that little bird had another thing coming if he thought he could fly in the hummingbird territory. Here’s this little hummingbird chasing a larger bird off his turf. He chased him around, and around till the other bird finally took off. A little later I went into town, and I find the little bird the hummingbird chased off. Every year about the same time the hummingbirds come to town, flocks of these little birds arrive lining the power lines. I’ve never really taken notice of them except for the fact that they’re there. I take out my phone to see if I can zoom in enough to get an idea of what their markings are. In flight they seem to be a sort of swallow without the forked tail. I get a fair enough picture, not good enough to be a pretty picture, but good enough for me to try to discover what it is.
I found a website that has pictures of all the birds that either pass through or live in NM year round. Turns out that the little bird is a swallow, a Bank Swallow. It’s called a Bank swallow as you find it around riverbanks. Riverbanks in the desert? As a matter of fact there are rivers around here. There is a creek that runs in the monsoon season that winds around our area. There are even rushes, and reeds growing there during the summer. Lots of insects mean insect eaters including the Bank Swallow. I also discovered that the birds that make their nest in our garage every year are called Say’s Phoebe another insect eater. The bluebird that’s here year round is a Mountain Bluebird, and the Jay that takes up residence around the chicken coop (eating leftover’s) is a Pinion Jay. Who knew? We have the normal sparrow, and a Dark-eyed Junco. Once in a while you can find a Roadrunner, or hear an owl, and I have a picture I took of one I can’t identify. We have a falcon, but I haven’t seen it recently. The eagles are more often in Ruidoso, and last, but not least there are the Turkey Vultures. These are the birds I see around the ranch.