Apricots bearing severe symptoms of herbivore gluttony litter our backyard, some attacked while still attached to their respective branches, beacons to marauding austral thrushes. The elegantly groomed plant cutter birds eat at tree level or leftover pickings on the ground. I gather what I can salvage, slightly eaten or ripe enough to harvest. These make great afternoon milkshakes, to which I add whatever other fruit I have on hand. Some cherries are still to be had, while nectarines and peaches are making their round, bright appearance in fruit stands and supermarkets.
Our tortoise, who in the past gorged himself on the fallen apricots, is still not showing interest in food. He and the birds used to make a great environmental team, one dislodging the fruit, while Speedy ate what was left. This year he shows no interest, even trotting right over the fruit I’ve placed in his path. Yesterday we made another trip to the vet’s office. He’s puzzled why Speedy is still not eating, took a blood sample and asked me to get another x-ray done. Meanwhile, we continue to give him three kinds of antibiotics daily. He seems to be getting accustomed to being handled so much now and is allowing us to pet him. If only he could tell us his problem.