Right now the birding season is all about nesting, and particularly feeding of the young ones. This Black-capped Chickadee photo taken in our back yard yesterday shows a very worn looking adult bringing some kind of green stuff resembling miniature grapes to the bird house. As it turns out I have three nests that I am keeping close tabs on, all with Black-capped Chickadees. The first nest to have babies was a nest at my daughter’s house in Dallas, then a nest in our backyard here in Salemtowne, and now a nest at the Salem Audubon Reserve. I thought it would be an exciting time, but it has turned out to be a time of great angst and worry, at least for the nest in our back yard. Yesterday, Jeanette had to chase off a pair of Western Bluebirds that where trying to enter our chickadees bird house. When I got home I inspected the nest and it appeared that the three babies were lifeless. We watched closely as an adult appeared to be unsuccessful in rousing the babies to feed. It would arrive at the fence and cry out its chickadee-dee-dee several times, then enter the nest and immediately leave again with the food still in its beak. We left to do some shopping with sad hearts thinking the babies were dead; perhaps a single mother was not able to bring enough food. Several hours later we returned and attempts at feeding appeared to still be going on. I took the bird house down and we re-checked the babies and I could see at least one was still breathing. Stay tunes as we helplessly watch the natural process unfold.