The babies are gone. Over the weekend I heard the pair of hummingbird hatchlings chirping in the walnut-sized nest their mother suspended in the immense avocado tree in my patio.
During the past several weeks, through torrential rainstorms, wind and amid the hailstorm of falling one-pound avocados, the babes stayed snug in the nest which bobbed with the breezes at the tip of a green branch.
It was my housekeeper, Emma, who first spotted the pair awaiting their mother’s next food delivery. I’ve never hung a red plastic hummingbird feeder, still at least six or eight of the tiny fliers zip through my garden sampling ornamental ginger, yellow hibiscus, basil, lavender, lime and even chile flowers. We put in a good deal of time hoping to see the mother visit the little nest but she was far too cagey for a pair of mere mortals.
Today when we each visited our vantage points and took up the watch, we realized that the nest is quiet, abandoned. Those dear new baby birds have flown the coop.
Emma and I are a little lost, and more than a little concerned. We are experiencing the seasonal fall pangs of worry that accompany the empty nest syndrome.