Mulberry for the Fledglings

Dear Friend of my Heart,

By the beginning of May the less elevated parts of the Dun Valley experience a rather humid tropical climate, which, as I remember from some two decades ago, made for very drowsy afternoons. Everyone was either asleep or dosing off. Most of the spring blossoms have dried up by now. The Godetias(farewell to spring), Asters, Petunias, Alyssums and Button Daisies are all but gone. Some shriveled up pansies and phloxes are shedding their seeds in the heat. Geraniums, still flowering, bravely accompany the perennial shrubs of Hibiscus Rosa, both I have been meaning to use as tea infusions for some time now.

Although the afternoons are no longer as drowsy as I remember them from my childhood, in the company of these flowers I shall always have a home.

Since past few years, a pair of Himalayan Bulbuls has been nesting in one of the Hibiscus trees.

Himalayan Bulbul with a Mulberry

The handsome bulbul parent with a Mulberry for her fledglings. It so happened that I made acquaintance with the baby litter before the momma. Due to wonton malevolence on the part of a young erratic monkey, the nest was destroyed and the chicks lay groveling on the ground, feeble and scared. They were relocated to a more secure and warm location and fed banana bits until the return of the Bulbul couple. The chicks were safe. I could hear them chirp as their industrious parents brought them nourishment every now and then. Within a few days the chicks were ready to take flight and they did. Farewell little birdies.

The relocated chicks
A Crimson Sunbird

The weather’s been moody. A raging cyclone on the west coast in mid may, and we had a visitor from cooler environs here north in Dehradun. I know crimson sunbird from the winters. This young one is preening and basking in the sun after the showers. He wouldn’t know of the hurricane, would he. The Tropical Cyclone Tauktae is the strongest storm on record to hit the Indian coast. Bang in between the Covid crisis, it has been a much bigger disaster. All we got to experience of it were a few rainy days.

Here are some other pictures I wanted to share with you.

How are the birds and flowers doing around you? I hope the winds and rains have been kind.

Eager to hear from you,

Yours from the Garden,

Prashant Nawani


  1. Himalayan Bulbuls make great parents, they bring home mulberry; all humans got now is cerelac! Beautiful Pictures 🙂

    1. 😄 They do make great parents. They make do with whatever they can find though. I might start foraging myself if and when I have a kid. It’s like radio. Never know when you are in for a surprise or a disappointment.

  2. The flowers are wonderful both open and unopen, spent and full. i wish I had photos of my New England flowers to share with you.My titmouse looks a bit like your Bulbul but smaller and I have nothing as exotic as your sunbird although the male ruby throat is lovely. What I really love in my garden is the early morning bird chorus. I am beginning to recognize a definite pattern of sound as each bird takes its part.

    1. Dear songbird learning to sing,
      How lovely it is to hear from you! It would be most delightful if you were to share the pictures of your New England flowers.
      There are several other birds who are regulars and seasonal visitors hereabouts. I have not been taking as many pictures though. Also, presently things are not looking too good in India in terms of the Covid crisis so we stay indoors mostly.
      I am going to try and take more pictures of the birds in the garden to share with you.
      I have not been listening to the birdsongs lately. I’ll take inspiration from you and listen to the morning chorus tomorrow.
      Warm regards,

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