Birds, another reason I love living where we do. I have been watching this particular woodpecker work on this tree for weeks! I don’t think it’s just food he is retrieving, I think he is making a home. As I type this I can hear him chirping.
Look there is (a) Robin, my Mother said to me once at birthday party, and I replied by saying – where’s batman. No, unfortunately I was not making a joke! I was 4 or 5 years old, and evidently I watched a lot of the Batman cartoons- Kazam…
Spring time in Western Maryland…. yep, we have 10 inches of snow in the yard! Although the snow is beautiful to watch fall and a great subject, we are ready for some warmer weather. It didn’t help much that we were in Austin a few weeks ago and the highs were in the low 90s and lows in the high 60s… and sunshine…. so nice.
Our first big snow! We waited and waited Tuesday evening for the snow to arrive, it was first scheduled for 6pm, then 8pm… finally it arrived around 10pm. We woke to a beautiful soft snow cover on everything, even the tree branches where white.
Snow doesn’t stop the birds from coming out for breakfast. I did put some seeds on the carport, out of the snow and wind, but they seem to like the bird feeders and ground below.
This male Cardinal has been coming around lately. He is so much more vibrant than any of the other male Cardinals that visit.
He stays on the right half of the backyard, which doesn’t bother the male on the left side of the yard.
This is his ‘wife’. They have (what looks like) a six-week old baby and dad has been feeding him at the feeder on the side yard (outside the kitchen window).
Mom is busy making another nest.
Three Titmouse babies and their friend the chickadee
Today has been an exciting day around my house. As I drank my morning coffee on the patio, I noticed the baby cardinal standing on the edge of its nest. I could see the baby cardinal without binoculars! It has grown, after all it is nine days old now. I managed to get a few pictures early in the morning. I am glad I did, because around 10am, he decided to fly out of the nest. Baby didn’t go far, just into the rose bushes near the lemon tree his/her nest has been in. Baby fluttered around for a few hours in the rose-bush while Mom and Dad feed him/her. Mom and Dad have been by its side all day. As I type baby is on the roof, sitting under an oak tree, while Mom and Dad are chirping away in the tree above.
The pictures are from today, nine days old. Two of baby, one of baby and Dad, and two of squirrels, they are siblings. I have never seen squirrels lie this way, it’s a bit strange and humorous.
Cats vs. Birds (and squirrels)
Don’t get me wrong, I love having cats…BUT… cats and birds just don’t mix. For the past month or so I have been spending a large part of my day in the back yard (I think I mentioned this before ;) watching birds. It has been quite an education. I have witnessed communication, nesting habits, feeding habits, mating habits, territorial fighting… oh, and let’s not forget playing habits! Birds have such personalities, it has been fun to watch.
Below are some pictures that have been taken over the past few weeks. Enjoy:
This was taken before the Cardinals baby was born, they would sit on the lounge chair with me and watch the birds too.
This is Heidi, she’s more interested in napping that chasing birds.
Mom Cardinal coming for dinner.
Mom, after her bath.
Mom, shaking out the water after the bath.
Bath time for Dad.
Dad, still bathing.
One baby Cardinal, two days old.
Four days old.
Six days old.
Mom was watching me take the picture on day six.
Dad is usually close by too. (Actually, he stays closer than Mom)
Dad in defense mode. There has been another male Cardinal coming around for the past three days, Dad chases him for hours…I mean hours! I noticed he holds his wings slightly away from his body when he feels threatened.
Meow, please let me out :(
My sweet husband took me to the beach today. I haven’t been out much lately, but today has been great, he has made it a very comfortable day. I packed a few snacks and he actually packed our loungers (the ones from our patio).
I always bring a book, a magazine, a notebook to write… And seldom do I take them out of my bag. There is so much to see! Birds, waves, people, fish, my husband acting like a 12 year old collecting stuff…
I am posting an iPhone photo, but will post other pictures later.
If you could be an animal, what would you be? Well, you guessed it… I would be a bird. The idea of soaring through the sky, feeling the breeze on your… what… face? feathers?, having the freedom to travel great distances… who wouldn’t want to do that? I know, I know, it’s not always such a glamorous life for birds. And let’s not talk about what they eat! I would of course be a vegetarian bird, finding a nice old lady (not unlike myself) that fills the bird feeders and supplies plenty of fresh water in the bird bath for me and my friends. One more things, this sweet old lady would not have cats (very much unlike myself).
Lately I have been a bit under the weather and I find myself outside, sitting on my lounger. It has been cool (81 degrees for the high) and not very humid, great bird watching weather- even if it is just in my backyard. In fact, as I type this I am sitting on my lounger and I am not alone. My two cats are on the lounger too, sleeping soundly. I can also hear baby birds in my neighbor’s yard chirping for their dinner and a Woodpecker pecking a tree.
Several happenings go on in the backyard.
- One, the Mockingbird eats the blossoms off our olive tree. He does this every year.
- Two, the Cardinals sing to each other. This usually takes place in the morning. One male will perch high in a tree and there are two others (that I can hear) he sings to and they sing back. I have seen as many as five Cardinals flitting about in the yard at one time.
- Three, Chickadees and Titmouse visit the feeder everyday. They hang out in an acorn tree (not sure what the real name of the tree is) in the side yard. Four to six can be found flying back and forth between feeder and tree daily.
- Four, recently there have been a few Purple Martins flying overhead. Sometimes two, sometimes five… they fly in large circles over the house. Pretty amazing site.
- Five, the house Wrens. These little birds have been very busy this Spring. They have already made one nest on our back porch and abandoned it and are now finishing up a new nest in our shed. They work quickly and very much as a team. It’s been fun to witness. This morning I watched as one snagged a butterfly! I had kept our cats in during the first building process, but then let them out after I realized the Wrens abandoned their nest, now that they are back.. in they go again.
Although I am stopping at five, there are more birds that visit, but not each day as the others do.
The cardinals must know I am writing about them! The male and female are both in the tree directly overhead, chirping. And they are off, first the female, then the male to follow.
Each time I see a Blue Jay I can not help but think of my husbands Grandmother. I can picture her sitting in her recliner having a conversation with one through the window. Now this was not a one-sided conversation, the Blue Jay would
squawk talk back. It mostly went like this: oh, be quite Grandmother would say; you be quiet, the Blue Jay would say…. this would go on for while, they both were stubborn like that.
As for the picture, it’s not the best, he was jumping around and hard to capture. I also shot through the kitchen window, not an easy task (difficult to be sneaky). But I had to share, they are such beautiful birds. It is incredible, all the beauty that surrounds us.
“There is a road from the eye to the heart that does not go through the intellect.”
~Gilbert Keith Chesterton