Stupid Friendly Little Birdies

May 6th, 2007 by: cheyenne

Bird. Gulf of Mexico

We mentioned that shortly after anchoring in Alacran, we were visited by a scruffy but adorable little birdie who, after maybe thirty seconds of initial hesitation, entered our cabin and totally made himself (herself?) at home in our boat. Strangely, he was not worried about us at all, even when we moved around, and a couple of times he landed on our arms or knees. He explored the entire interior of the boat and settled into a lap pattern: cockpit to sink/galley area, where we had a squeezed lime sitting on the counter, pick at the lime (working on the scurvy), hop around and then make the short flight to the settee table, give Joshua the eye and then hop across the table flying up to the aft window shelf/ledge, start at the basket of shells/beach debris looking for insects, move onto the plastic lid I made a water dish out of and splash water all over the cabin, move on to the basket with pens and miscellaneous crap and look for bugs, tuck into the far corner hidey hole for maybe two seconds before emerging and making way back to cockpit, spend some time in cockpit and then enter forward cabin, do some stuff (we weren’t in there) and return to aft cabin around three minutes later to repeat the entire process over and over again. He never even pooped on our stuff either, or at least we never found it. Not yet.

Bird. Gulf of Mexico

Bird. Gulf of Mexico

Bird. Gulf of Mexico

About a day after we left Alacran, we were visited by another small bird; this time a swallow. It was a beautiful bird with iridescent blue/purple head feathers, long clean and smooth wing and tail feathers, a rust-colored throat fringed with a bit of black, and a pale gold breast. He landed on our boat and sat for a bit on the foredeck, then moved closer, closer (trying to get out of the wind), and finally perched on the edge of the cockpit before falling asleep. While asleep, we had total immunity and could move freely within inches of him; when awake, we were more careful because sudden movement of massive bodies freaked him out a little. He slept on and off for hours and nearing dark, crawled into the cockpit cubby to sleep. All night long we wondered if he was still inside the cubby because we never saw him fly away but in the morning, he was gone. (This one was a pooper though and our sail bag, which was stuffed in the cockpit locker, suffered.)

swallow. Gulf of Mexico

We saw a number of migrating swallows, among other birds like egrets, “songbirdies,” etc., all flapping madly for the southern US coast. Nobody else stopped to rest though.

All this friendly bird action reminded us of a photo we took in 2002 of what happens to little birdies who lose their inhibition. This is a street-snack stand that would appear in the evenings in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

deep fried song birds. Phnom Penh, Cambodia

[Click the image to see the full photo.]

3 Comments on “Stupid Friendly Little Birdies”

  1. shanti says:

    Welcome back.

    Are those dragon eye fruit next to the unfortunate birdies?

    I love those!


  2. cheyenne says:

    I don’t know what they are, we never ate them. They sort of look like a fruit we ate in Nicaragua called “mamey,” which is related to those hairy red fruits they have in asia (they call them “mamey chino” in Central America).

    We talked to a local guy on the street who spoke some English about them. He said they weren’t his favorite street snack although he had eaten them before. He said he didn’t like to eat the head but a typical deep-fried songbird connoisseur would.

  3. Spurwing Plover says:

    Its not that often you can get wildbirds to come in that close

Leave a Comment

Cheyenne Weil, Joshua Coxwell