Thank you for your observations ...
Well things settled down a bit after that one week stretch of late night singing. I think I have a pretty good explanation for this unusual bird behavior. Indeed it has to do with mating season. As I said the bird population has steadily increased the past several years with more people planting trees and small gardens around here. And by the way, we have a wide variety of bird species here in the City- not just pigeons. I have seen such beautiful C
lue Jays, R
obins, Woodpeckers, Hummingbirds, migrating Canada Geese, and of course many kinds of Sparrows. We also have Mockingbirds but I don't think they are a dominant group in this area. And I don't think they were the ones singing away those nights. I think it was the large groups of sparrows I see whistling, flying around, momentarily alighting on a branch, and darting back and forth amongst my hedges, bushes, trees and those of my neighbors.
So, as the weather started getting very warm, and because the thriving bird communities were not able to finish all of their calling/ cooing/ whistling/ singing and other rituals of mating during the day, (amidst the noisy background and many interruptions of life in the city), they ended up going into extra innings, late-night sessions of serenading their mates. As I said, it was pleasant and interesting to hear the birds calling and responding so harmoniously one to another, but it was very intense, purposeful and dominating- with some clear competition going on among our feathered friends. I'm glad to know the birds are healthy and happy. I really didn't mind their singing at 2am and waking me up. I'm not a grumpy or grouchy person by nature. I have a peaceful spirit and thought it was just an amazing experience. And we seem to have a warm season ahead of us- a heat wave just hit us here in the City, bringing in the beginning of summer. So the birds are very busy and we can expect a lot of little bird babies
Now I have to be prepared. It's baby bird season. Over the years I have been involved in a lot of bird rescues. I have fond memories from my childhood of rescuing baby birds with my brothers and sister... and the help of our cats. That's right- our cats
. Our kitties were always well-trained and would never eat a defenseless little baby bird, or so we hoped... Each year, after the eggs hatched and a new group of fledglings started to mature, the mother birds would have flight lessons with the youngsters. And as the baby birds were learning to fly they would inevitably crash into windows, fences, walls, fall out of trees, or come short of making it up to a branch with their developing wings (sort of like my chubby kitty trying to make a long jump from the floor up into a window, half-making it and scrambling the rest of the way, sometimes hurdling onto the windows sill and sometimes tumbling her fat self back to the floor LOL)....
So the cats we had then were very gentle and when one of them would find a scared little baby bird scrambling around in our yard, it would chase it around a little, scare and traumatize it, catch it in its mouth and bring it to us- sort of like, "Hey, master, you are the head cat and leader of our group- look what I found! Aren't you proud of me? I am a great hunter. Here- look! No, I didn't eat it yet- I want to share it with you." And, as we petted and encouraged the cat, it would drop the bird on the ground. The bird, of course, would be in shock. Good thing the cats never bit or seriously injured the bird. We would then take the poor little bird, put a few drops of water on his head and beak to revive him, check that his wings were not injured , and put him into a basket, cage or whatever we could find. Then we would climb up and set him on top of the garage. We would shy away from him a little so that he would start calling for his mother.
The mother bird and her search party were never far away. They would soon start circling and swooping downwards. Once we knew they had seen the baby, we would climb onto a step ladder and try to open the cage door so the baby bird would start jumping around. Then we would move away again. It was a sight to see- the love and attraction, and fearlessness of that mother bird, as she would leave the other members of the search party in the nearby branches and swoop down closer and closer to the baby. She knew we were there, though we had moved away to give her room to maneuver. And of course she could smell our scent on the baby. But there came a moment when, with the coaxing of that mother, and the excitement of that baby, and the noisy tweeting back and forth, and everyone in suspense- from my brothers, sister, I, to the other birds looking on- that wonderful moment would occur, where that baby bird would scramble, spread its wings, half-perched on its mother's back, and she would take off, lifting and buoying him up. And, as she hit full stride, releasing him on his own, he would take courage, and somehow, with the frantic flurrying of those feeble wings, as if lifted up by God Himself, make it back to a high branch. And we would watch in such joy as that mother and baby would bounce from one branch to another, heading for their nest, and make it safely home...
It was one of those great moments in life.