One never knows what they will see on a ranch, and I don’t mean when you are visiting. Live there for years and shovel enough muck (both virtual and literal) and eventually you will experience things that are just downright odd.
This morning I was standing in the barn waiting for the bottle calf to finish eating and I was in deep la-la land daydream mode. Suddenly there was a whirring of feathers and a bird flew through the open door and almost slammed into my face. Once my heart rate came down and I established that nothing was trying to kill me and eat me, I took a look and I saw it was a young meadowlark, no doubt testing his wings for the first time.
Now here’s the curious part: close on his heels was another bird. No, not his anxious mother, but a plain old house sparrow. The meadowlark flopped and flailed around for about five more minutes inside the barn and where ever he went the little sparrow followed.
I’ve never seen anything like it and I have no idea if:
1. the sparrow was simply curious.
2. the sparrow hatched the meadowlark egg and thought it was her own baby
3. the sparrow was ticked off and chasing the meadowlark away
4. the sparrow was going to eat the meadowlark
5. the sparrow owed money to the cat and was out calling in loans (“Yeah, Mrs. Meadowlark, about those grasshoppers I loaned you last week? Well, I’ll take payment in the form of your firstborn chick. What can I say – inflation!”)
I have no idea, and frankly, not knowing is much more fun.