Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Birds

I've had a bird feeder just outside my kitchen window for several years. I enjoy watching the birds come feed and the grandchildren love to watch them too. Sometimes I'm not too faithful in keeping the feeder filled with their favorite foods
and the birds go away for a while.

But in the last few weeks, Steve has taken an interest in bird feeding--and bird watching! He came home from either Rural King or Walmart with a new feeder & hung it out on my gazebo. And he bought an assortment of seeds, some that I never bothered with.

The birds love him! Since Steve has been put in charge of the bird feeding around here, we have all kinds of feathered friends flocking to our feeders. The gazebo is just far enough away from the house that it attracts more birds. And now the variety of seeds Steve is putting out, is attracting all varieties! We now have four feeders, plus a blue bird nesting house.

The ever present sparrows are always flittering around, shooing off some of the prettier birds. Some mornings the finches completely take command. The
beautiful cardinals are often seen, both male & female. And for two days last week, two male cardinals played a game of chasing each other all over the yard all day long, evidently in a territorial or mating match! Not sure who won that one!

There have been nuthatches, tufted titmouse, mourning doves, a red headed woodpecker, possibly an oriole!, and beautiful bluebirds!

Just imagine the three of us, sitting at the kitchen table, passing around the binoculars, grabbing our bird-identifying booklets, and trying to figure out who's who out there on our feeders! I had to laugh the other day when I realized what we were doing. Is this what you do when you get old?

But danger lurks. Last week I saw a Cooper's hawk sitting high up in one of our trees. Thankfully, he flew away and hasn't been seen since. I was horrified to read that he feeds on birds at feeders!
Then there is that pesky pair of squirrels that absolutely love the taste of bird seed too! They are often spotted skittering around, feeding off of the left overs that the birds scatter. The brave one climbs my gazebo, dangles upside down to his favorite food, & sucks the feeder dry in just a matter of a few minutes. That is when I hear the back door slam & out goes Steve, with a ball in hand, trying to nail a squirrel! So far, Mr. Squirrel has been faster on his feet.
And just this morning I spotted our neighbors huge cat sneaking out to the gazebo and hiding in the grasses. For a while there were no birds at the feeders so hopefully Mr. Cat was spotted & reported to the bird watchouts!
My thin-blooded, Californian brother has decided to fly the coop himself for a few days. He is traveling south to find warmer weather, & hopefully a fishing hole or two. For now, he has left me in charge of the birds.
I'll be busy the next few days with my bird duties. I'm just hoping I don't have to kill myself a cat!


Sherry said...

Get Bob a BB gun and have a squirrelly dinner!

Carol said...

Sounds like I might know three old farts who just MAY have a little too much time on their hands!!! : ) LOL

Karen Walden said...

What about the squirrels? Are they still around?! That was hilarious, watching them hang upside down and empty that feeder! Also hilarious seeing Jonathan and Steve throwing tennis balls at them!!

Sheila said...

I had to shoo a squirrel away a couple of days ago. They think it's a buffet!

Karen Walden said...

Better get those feeders filled back up before Steve gets back!! ;)

Dorcas said...

I, too, love watching birds! The last few winters we haven't put up our bird feeders :o(( Now that my little grandson is here and loves them that's something we want to do for him to enjoy!!