Mama starlings hop up and down as thought the bird table is too hot to touch, matchstick beaks stretched wide in protest, screeching and scolding and squawking. I peer out confused. I put out lots of food for their babies, and they can’t have eaten it all already. But the source of their angst is crouched at the foot of the table. My white cat is too fat to be truly hidden amongst the greenery: he isn’t fooling anyone!
This is a daily occurance, and I take back every time I've moaned about my children - starling babies are a million times more demanding! The parent birds look scrawny at the moment, which is hardly surprising since their brood follow them relentlessly, squabbling to be fed, and snatching every last morsel from the adult bird's beak, whether it meant to feed them or not. And every morning, after I've put out food, the cat pretends he is a stealthy hunter and sits in the flower border, biding his time. Then again, I used to think he was too fat to catch anything, but sadly, he likes to prove me wrong. He leaves his victims' corpses on the doorstep, and sidles indoors to miaow for cat biscuits. Such a sweet-natured creature!