Avian Warfare

After a brief panic on the part of the deliveryman, we received a full tank of oil today. The operator couldn’t initially get his machine to work,

Oil delivery

so he spent some time, whilst we trembled in trepidation, tinkering with dials.

Before the rain set in, I cut the grass and Jackie carried on clearing and tidying the rest of the garden.

Netting on eaves

Having spotted that a number of birds have been tearing strips off our roofing insulation for nest building, she has netted up the entrances in continuing the avian warfare begun yesterday against the greenfinches.

Blocking starling nest

Whilst she was at it, she also blocked the route to last year’s starling nest.


She cleaned out the Waterboy feature and set it going again.

Back inside, as feared, we found the boiler wasn’t working. This, we discovered, seemed to be because Jackie had turned the living room wall thermostat to zero when we ran out of fuel. She turned it up. The light came on on the reset button. When it was depressed, as the instruction book suggested, we had lift-off. We will be having the device serviced anyway, just to be on the safe side.

This afternoon the rain desisted and we continued weeding and tidying.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s lemon chicken; sweet potatoes; and sautéed leeks, mushrooms, broccoli, and bacon; followed by apple strudel and custard. She drank Hoegaarden and I drank Reserve des Tuguets madiran 2012.


  1. What feast, indeed! My mouth was watering as I read the description about your dinner. I must say I envy the fact that your weather is warm enough for the water feature. This morning, when I let the dog out in the backyard, I found that the water in his outside dish was frozen solid. Plus, it’s been spitting snow off and on all day. Oh, the weather in Maine!

  2. I would be nervous too if I had a great tank of oil connected to my house by a man who doesn’t seem to know what he’s doing. Let’s hope you don’t get lifted off.

    Will you put fish in your pond? I have fish but no pump or filter in mine. I had to put a wire cage over it to stop birds from fishing it. I use a plastic hose thing and gravity to take the water out. Great tonic for my plants. Then I replace the water from a bucket. Very low tech.

    Yummy dinner.

    1. Thanks, Mary. The pond is too small for fish, but birds drink from it. We have another little pond, filling a cistern. Last year it had frog or toad spawn which didn’t come to anything

    1. We have bird boxes in the garden, but the starlings were a bit close to home last year, not good for our garden furniture,(bird poo daily) and not really good for them as we were in and out of the garden and this stressed the parents, tho’ they did manage to raise their brood.

      1. It seems there would be plenty to nest in in your garden, even if you didn’t supply extra bird homes. Good luck discouraging them. Once they’ve found a place, they seem to be persistent.

  3. Your finches should have had plenty of twigs to use for their nests after your rainstorms! This would seem like an avian attack! I like your sense of humor and glad heat is restored upon the household, Derrick. 🙂 Delicious meal, once again.

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