Some like it hot

After months of tattered leaves and mysterious disappearing fruits, I’ve finally got a small but perfectly formed crop of jalapeno peppers.  Christmas in Anglo Australia traditionally involves pacing around a baking kitchen with novelty oven gloves and lingering anxiety about possible food poisoning, so pickling something hot would seem seasonally appropriate.

I’ve figured out why I have anything to preserve.  Sometime over the last week or two, the robotic clicks and chirrs of the satin bowerbirds have faded out of our soundscape.  I’m not sure where our place fits into satin bowerbird’s cycle of the year.  Does our backyard counts as “open woodland” where according to WIRES bowerbirds move in autumn and winter? Or is our vegetable patch a “territory… occup[ied] year after year” in the spring breeding season….?

One way or another, having kept the overshadowing trees in trim all winter, (with the odd mouthful of chilli leaf, grape vine and mulberries, just to freshen the palate) it seems they’re off to do their fine topiary work elsewhere.  I just hope the spiky sticks that I used to fence in my chilli plants in a vain attempt to protect them from marauders didn’t do any permanent damage to their lovely violet eyes – I’m pretty sure topiary, not to mention collecting and arranging blue pegs, is easier with binocular vision… But do satin bowerbirds have binocular vision…?  That’s a research project for another day…

2 thoughts on “Some like it hot

  1. I have one raspberry bush in a tub on the deck here in Canberra and it’s been quite prolific in the berry department. They are quite delicious but Mrs Bowerbird has discovered them. She barks at the cats then leaps onto the bamboo canes and steals the ripe berries. She’s too gorgeous to shoo away so our raspberries come from the markets!

    • Ah, that explains why my raspberries have been so unproductive!! I thought it was just the subtropical climate. They are lovely birds but I have to say when they stripped my mulberry tree clean I was a bit miffed!!

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