Tuesday, April 2, 2019

March Photos of Cardinals

During the early days of Spring, our Cleveland Pear tree bears its beautiful white blooms.  When they begin to fade, the Cardinals will sometimes eat what's left.  They seem to love it.  

The males are brilliantly red right now.  I've noticed the past couple of weeks that the Cardinals have all been sparring quite a bit.  Maybe it's because nesting season is near and they're trying to find mates and establish territorial boundaries.  Whatever the reasons, they're very active these days-  constantly chasing each other through the trees and being more dominant than usual at the bird feeders.  Grumpy birds.  

Monday, April 1, 2019

Female Downy Woodpecker

I don't often have the pleasure of seeing a Downy Woodpecker in our yard,
but I got lucky a couple of days ago...

She stayed on the Mimosa tree trunk for several minutes, pecking around for insects.  
Such a cute little beauty.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Wren Couple Returns

I had the pleasure of watching a pair of Carolina Wrens prepare their nest in one of the birdhouses yesterday. They raised a brood in the same birdhouse about this time last year. There's a brand new birdhouse in our back yard but they chose the old one. I call it a bird "townhouse", and they chose the most dilapidated house. I figure maybe it's because the cracks on the side allow for more ventilation. I don't know. We are all creatures of habit, aren't we? I watched them for about an hour or so, flying back and forth, gathering sticks and leaves to cushion and protect their forthcoming eggs. They worked as a team. Sometimes Dad wren would take a break and perch on top during which time he'd sing. It's incredible to hear such a loud song coming from this tiny bird.

The last photo is NOT a Carolina Wren.  It's a Chipping Sparrow that decided to check out the activity going on at the bird townhouse.  He didn't seem all that impressed so he didn't hang around for long.  

Friday, October 19, 2018

Bathing Bluebirds

I was briefly entertained by a bluebird family as they bathed in the fresh, clean water in our birth bath.  There was a total of four bluebirds, probably the parents and two juveniles.  The younger birds flew around the bird bath and close to the water but instead of landing on the rim, they landed on the flower stems surrounding it.  I'm not sure why they didn't dip into the water with the others.  Maybe they haven't fully developed their landing skills.  I wish my camera had been set up to shoot a video of them.  They were so precious to watch!

"The air is crowded with birds; beautiful, tender, intelligent birds
to whom life is a song".

Friday, April 27, 2018

Back Yard Notes

The new flowers and plants are taking well in the flower garden.  The carpet roses are heavy laden with blooms.  The day lilies are close to making their spring appearance.  Their bed needs a coat of mulch before the summer heat sets in. 

Daddy Wren perched upon an old weathered tree stump just a few feet from me and began singing.  It was a perfect moment to snap a good photo.  I watched for a while as the wren parents made several trips around the brush in the back yard then in and out of the nest box.  I could hear the baby birds chirping when a parent approached the nest.

Piper likes to come out of the brush and play when I'm in the area.  She gets hyperactive and does all sorts of silly things that make me laugh.  She plays with pine cones and sticks and digs around in the dirt and piles of pine straw.  She runs and dashes about and sometimes takes an unpredictable notion to climb halfway up a tree.  On this day, she wanted to include Butters in her play but he displayed no interest in it.  He didn't have time for her nonsense because it was interfering with his cat nap.  

I enjoy the sights and sounds of my back yard.  I treasure the abundant signs of life in it.