Living above a restaurant

house finch nest 1 IMG_4358© Maria de Bruyn resAt one point in Amsterdam, I lived in a room with a shared kitchen and toilet above a butcher shop. It was a cramped space but I made some nice friends there. Eventually, I painted the hallway with flowers and snails to bring a bit of nature inside. Today, on my way to a prompt writing session, I saw that some birds also choose to live above commercial establishments, including those who established homes above one of my favorite restaurants, El Tigre.

House finch nest 1IMG_4373© Maria de Bruyn res

 

There were three nests (at least – I didn’t look around to the other wall), with house finches (Haemorhous mexicanus) on either side of a European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) home in the middle. Nest 1 had a female bird visiting while a couple stayed inside.

 

The other finch nest was attended by both mother and father.

house finch nest 3 IMG_4375© Maria de Bruyn res house finch nest 3 IMG_4351© Maria de Bruyn res

house finch nest 3 IMG_4396© Maria de Bruyn res

European starling IMG_4390© Maria de Bruyn resThe nest with starlings had rather large babies in it. At one point, an adult bird flew in with a worm or insect but then took off before feeding anyone – perhaps alarmed when it saw me watching the nest. The babies didn’t say much, in contrast to the somewhat older baby starlings in my yard who make quite a racket asking to be fed.

European starling IMG_4387© Maria de Bruyn resEuropean starling IMG_4347© Maria de Bruyn res

 

European starling IMG_4397© Maria de Bruyn res

I wasn’t the only observer, however; a couple house sparrows (Passer domesticus) were also observing the comings and goings to and from the nests.

house sparrow IMG_4412© Maria de Bruyn res house sparrow IMG_4355© Maria de Bruyn res

I had a busy day and didn’t think I’d get to do much nature observation – but then those adaptable birds showed me that even in an urban environment, I can grab a few moments to see what other species are doing on a lovely spring day!

 

5 thoughts on “Living above a restaurant

  1. wonderful post about birding wherever you may find yourself…even in an urban setting…or eating lunch in a favorite restaurant!

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    • Thanks, Mary! I wasn’t even eating there today but on my way to a writing session at Flyleaf (I arrived there a little late and then watched the birds again before heading home to mow the yard). 🙂

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  2. Yes, it is amazing how many birds adapt to living close to us. Hopefully it is tolerated. The house martins on the Algarve try for frontline positions over restaurants but some think it messy. I love to watch them. They make the world truly beautiful.

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