After receiving three wonderful books about birds along with two bird feeders for Christmas, I can safely say we are thoroughly immersed in the wonder of bird watching. As of today we have counted twenty-two different species of birds visiting our yard. Unfortunately the birds must share their seed and suet with the squirrel population. Four suet cages have disappeared altogether and by this morning two suet blocks were gone from the chalet that had been stocked just yesterday. The only suet cage that seems to be ignored by the squirrels is hanging on a suction device on one of the sun room windows. Yesterday I saw a Common Grackle, which is a large black bird, stuck on this cage and flapping its wings to free himself (or herself.) Occasionally a Blue Jay attempts unsuccessfully to land on the chalet which is made for smaller birds.. Hoping that a ground level sunflower seed filled bird bath will attract the larger birds and squirrels, I am disappointed to say they still eat the seeds on the feeders…along with the generous allotment in the garden. Safflower seeds are supposedly not of any interest to the squirrels. I tried a bag of these and can report that the gray squirrels weren’t interested, but the red squirrels thought them to be a tasty change.
We have two hummingbird feeders. One is in the back yard and one hangs on the front porch. The hummingbirds have returned from their winter migration and are buzzing around both feeders. I have not seen them take a drink yet, and will have to change the sugar water tomorrow, whether they drink it or not. My readings tell me that they like the water changed every three or four days. I might go for a week. This whole birding experience is getting expensive.
The collage I worked on last night and today developed into an interpretation of of a garden with hummingbirds. Attracted to flowers, especially those that are red, the little creatures dart around with their pointy beaks and fast moving wings. The buzzing sometimes sounds like the many bees that are around our apple tree. Hopefully we will have a good crop of apples this years thanks to them all.
My “Birds and Blooms” subscription that came as a bonus gift with one of my bird books surprised me this week with an issue devoted to hummingbirds. The tiny nest in the collage is a hummingbird nest. I hope to find one such nest someday in our yard. I will be collecting dryer lint and cotton in order to provide a helping hand. Spider webs will remain attached to my garden plants. Apparently the webs are used to give the nest a sturdy exterior. Birds are amazing. I wonder why it took such a long time for me to realize that. This weekend an event is planned for the bird lovers in our area. It might be the right time for me to check it out.