claireplymouth

RE RE: Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #7

This thread is intended to give people a place to post photos and/or talk about birds, critters, wildlife, fish, whatever - topics you might not want to start a whole thread on, but are still garden-related. You can see the range of possible topics in the previous threads:

All of the threads in the Birds and other mobile features in the garden series prior to 2012 are now stored in the New England Garden Forum Gallery. See the top of the main page to switch between Discussions and Gallery. For 2012, see
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #1,
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #2,
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #3,
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #4
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #5 and
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #6.


...............................................................................................................................................................

It's the day after Thanksgiving.

Yes, it's safe to come out now!

At least the rose hips seem to be ripe now, according to the squirrels.

Claire

This post was edited by claire on Mon, May 27, 13 at 17:28

All of the threads in the Birds and other mobile features in the garden series prior to 2012 are now stored in the New England Garden Forum Gallery. See the top of the main page to switch between Discussions and Gallery. For 2012, see

Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #1,

Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #2,

Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #3,

Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #4

Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #5 and

Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2012 #6.


...............................................................................................................................................................

It's the day after Thanksgiving.

Yes, it's safe to come out now!

At least the rose hips seem to be ripe now, according to the squirrels.

Claire

Comments (94)

  • pixie_lou
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Jane - since it is only suet in the bag, it lasts a long time. Even though there is a bird feeding almost very time I look out the window. I put this bag out around Haloween. It will probably last another month or so. Since it is do cold out, the suet doesn't go rancid and I easily get 2-3 months out of a bag in winter. In the summer I put smaller pieces in and change it monthly.

    The squirrels don't touch it. I get mostly woodpeckers, but also nuthatches and chickadees. Though I've also had titmice, catbirds and Carolina wrens. I have a thistle ball that attracts the finches. I'd love to put up a sunflower seed feeder to attractors birds, but have yet found a successful squirrel proof feeder.

  • spedigrees z4VT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I've been so enjoying the bird photos from everyone! The woodpecker interactions are fun to see, and the turkey duel series, well that's something you don't see everyday! Great photos!

    Years ago we used to feed the birds year round, but like nhbabs, bears have become a concern. It's illegal here in Vermont now to feed birds during the early spring months for that reason, and I would hate to have to remove a food source that our birds had become accustomed to mid-way through the "foodless" season. I'm not sure that my hummingbird feeders are strictly legal, but I think May is a cutoff month when one can resume bird feeding. Not sure, but I hope so. Anyways, without feeding the birds myself, I can enjoy seeing birds at the feeder vicariously through all the photos on here of everyone else's feeders!

    I know we have bears in the woods behind our house. We've seen one up there, and notice their tracks where they venture into the bramble thickets to eat the blackberries, and hear them calling in the spring. I like that they are there, but don't wish to lure them down to the house!

    Molie, no wonder your puppy is cute! We considered a cavalier king charles spaniel, but ultimately went with the familiar, aka another sheltie. But I have a place in my heart for the cavaliers. They are such friendly, cheerful little beings.

    And, Jane, I got a kick out of hearing about your tri-colored collie! My first two collies were tri-colors, but it was one of my sables later on that was a klepto like yours. He used to collect odd abandoned gloves on our walks and carry them home. I returned the first couple mittens to the general area where I think he swiped them, but a few weeks later when no one had claimed them, he snatched them up again and I gave up trying to return them to their anonymous rightful owners. We ended up with quite a collection too, some of which almost matched (or matched some of my lawfully purchased mittens) and I occasionally wore them! He never came in possession of underware, but he might well have, had he been able to escape from his yard to peruse neighboring clotheslines! Your collie must have been a soul sister to my Thistledown!

    I remember when they first introduced the wild turkeys here back in the early 70s, and how they thrived, exceeding expectations of the wildlife dept. When they opened the first tentative turkey season, hunters found them to be a difficult quarry, not at all like capturing/killing a domestic turkey. Some (unsuccessful) hunters (using the term loosely!) suggested that the wild turkeys should be bred with domestic turkeys to create a stupider version of wild turkey that would be easier to bag. Of course this suggestion was met with contempt by the more sportsmanlike hunters and game management alike. LOL Wild turkeys are definitely no dummies!

    Jane, in regard to your pond/brook/lake envy, I once had breakfast at a diner and happened to sit next to an avid bird watcher. He was joking about the "loche" in his back yard, which was apparently a sort of garden hose-fed hole he had dug in his back yard to attract birds. He told me that water of any kind will attract birds, more so than any feeder. Our brook varies from a trickle to a full-blown swamp during heavy rains in spring and fall, and it is a treasure. We only seldom had to haul water buckets to our horses during serious droughts or 30F below weather, and it has always been a bird and wildlife magnet. But I imagine bird baths kept filled will provide the same need or attraction.

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  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    spedigrees: I'm very glad I don't have to worry about black bears (although they're beginning to move into the area - one young male traveled around the Cape for a while last year and another was seen a few miles from here a couple of years ago).

    Re pixie_lou's woodpecker hierarchy: I'm at the computer window now and I had been glancing out and seeing a downy feeding on the suet cage. Suddenly a flicker flew down and kicked the downy off the suet. He's still feasting right now. Oops, just flew off. Downy is back on the suet.

    Re peanut/nugget feeder: Yesterday I saw two squirrels on the railing and I was getting ready to open the door and snarl at them if they got too close to the feeder. But one of the squirrels jumped on the other, seeming to try to pull it back. The other squirrel shook off the jumper and went closer to the feeder. The first squirrel tried again to pull away the other squirrel. Finally the other squirrel climbed on the feeder; at which point I opened the door and snarled.

    The squirrel fled, and I'm betting the first squirrel was saying "I told you so, I told you so!" At least some squirrels take me seriously.

    I'm not seeing much squirrel activity on this feeder - I hope this lasts.

    Claire

  • pixie_lou
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Claire - I finally looked at that PFW site. I need to start looking at tail feathers and neck commas. Thanks for the link.

    I haven't had a northern flicker around in a while. I had tons this summer feeding in the grass. Up to a dozen at a time. I can see the diet from Hugh the kitchen and living room so I'm looking a lot v

    This post was edited by claire on Sat, Dec 15, 12 at 15:41

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    pixie_lou: Are you sure they were Northern Flickers? They don't usually hang around together in large numbers. There's a thread on the Bird Watching Forum about a flock of flickers (I like saying 'flock of flickers') and most people think they were actually starlings, which look similar with the spots.

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    A flock of flickers is definitely fun. Maybe a fun, frolicking flock of flickers? oh, well. I have seen as many as 4-5 here at once in the summer combing the lawn for larvae or whatever the August plate du jour is. Today, however, is the first time I could capture a M&F pair together, and it's a count day. The other day there were 30 mourning doves here at once - not a count day, of course. This photo, though not super clear, at least shows his moustache and her clear face.

    Jane

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Okay, posting twice in a row is showing my laziness to upload pictures. But, this morning the bravest squirrel that lives here (also the one with a very stout attitude) managed to swing from the underside of the squirrel guard to the bottom of the feeder and latched on for dear life. Hanging upside down and feasting in that incomprehensible anti-gravity mode, I searched and found what I hope will be a deterrent based on Pixie's Slinky. It is a metal coil that I use on poles to grow string beans. Stretched it out and fitted it under the guard. He did not return today, but we all know rodents do not lack fortitude.

    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Well, depending on the type of vegetation you could have a flock of flickers on the phlox and eating flecks of flax...

    Or you could have two handsome flickers nicely photographed on a birch tree.

    I'm a little skeptical of that spiral staircase on the pole. I can see a squirrel climbing up the middle using the spiral as a handrail. Let us know how it works.

    Claire

  • defrost49
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I think we have come to an agreement with the squirrels that they can have what's on the ground but can't touch the feeders. My husband is home enough to chase off the naughty ones. At the Blue Seal store in Bow NH, they have a video playing behind the counter of a feeder they sell that is supposed to be squirrel proof. When a squirrel tries to jump on the rail, it starts spinning like a merry-go-round and the squirrel is flung off. Sorry, I didn't get the name or price.

    After saying our turkeys don't come close to the house, two came within a few feet yesterday. I think one was after the last of the cotoneaster berries. We have red polls again this winter. Most of them seem to prefer ground feeding.

  • pixie_lou
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Claire - I know they are flickers because of the red on the back of the head and the black bib on front. Late this summer I was concerned since I wasn't seeing the dominant red on the head, and after consulting with someone at Audobon I found out that the juveniles can be late to develop the red markings. As I looked closer I saw the head patch was yellowish.

    I have seen many flickers in my yard at a time, but I wouldn't say that they were together in a flock. It was more like a dozen random birds showed up to eat whatever it is they dig out of my grass. They were all acting independently.

    I just got home a while ago when I was thrilled to see a flicker eating in the grass. A few minutes later a bunch of starling stormed my suet feeder, kicking poor downie off and out. Mr Flicker just continued to peck the grass not bothered at all by the commotion. I've never seen starlings on my suet before.

    My apologies for the blurry pictures. I guess I should really clean my windows.

  • pixie_lou
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Whenever my daughter starts acting up, we ordered her to stand in first position. She's a budding ballerina, and that is the basic position for ballet - in ballet you stand in first position unless instructed otherwise, just like in the military you stand at attention until instructed otherwise. So I had to laugh when I saw our fat little squirrel, Jose, standing in first position on the bench under the suet feeder. I just wonder what type of mischief he's been up to.

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    pixie_lou: I'm glad that you really had a flock of flickers, although not really a flock, more of a chance meeting. I felt I should raise the question since it had come up recently on the Bird Watching Forum, and I, personally have never seen many flickers at one time. My experience, though, is limited by my area.

    A 'storm of starlings' is a good phrase.

    Jose does look a little chastened.

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Jose in 1st position is funny, PL. He is a chubbykins - you run a good diner too!
    Well, Mr. Toughy did not get to the feeder today. The wire is very springy and when touched (even by squirrel hands) it quivers, so maybe it'll work for awhile. He's thinking.

    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Round one to Jane, but I wouldn't rule out the power of a squirrel concentrating on food. Mr. Toughy is a worthy opponent.

    Claire

  • pixie_lou
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Hate to say it Jane, but if I were a betting woman, my money would be on Mr. Toughy.

    Today's episode in The Pecking Order of Woodpeckers - Red Bellie versus the Starlings.

    Mr. Red Bellie enjoying a morning munch, completely ignoring the storm of starlings.

    Hey - who said you could come on here. Don't you see I'm eating.

    I don't care if you are bringing in reinforcements. Go away. It's my suet.

    I meant both of you go away. Now.

    That is not away. Off my pole.

    Finally, I can eat in peace again.

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Very funny, pixie_lou, and it illustrates the admirable personality of woodpeckers. I've been thinking that if I came back as a bird I'd like to be a woodpecker - maybe like Mr. Red Bellie or maybe a flicker.

    Indomitable but not really aggressive (except maybe to other woodpeckers).

    Claire

  • NHBabs z4b-5a NH
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Jane - Only once has a bear been close enough to take a photo. On the few occasions I actually see them, mostly at best I see the south end of a north facing bear rapidly disappearing into the puckerbrush as I am driving, either on the road or a tractor in the woods. I also see lots of droppings and some tracks in the corn field next door some years, and one year I found a good-sized den excavation which had been abandoned, probably because s/he decided that he was too close to DH's shop. The one bear I did see close enough to photograph, it was probably too dark, though at the time it didn't even occur to me to grab the camera. It was probably between 4:30 and 5 one April morning, and I saw what I initially thought was a blop of manure a few feet from a truckload of manure that had been dumped the day previously. Then it moved and I realized that it was a bear lying on the ground so that he could easily graze on the the sprouts of winter wheat that had been planted the previous fall as a green manure crop. This was perhaps a couple hundred feet from the kitchen window, and so I just stood sipping my coffee and watching until the early morning commuters driving by in front of the house alarmed the bear and s/he retreated to the woods. Amazing!

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Thank you, nhbabs, for that account, and I hope they don't come any closer to you. I'm OT here a bit in that it was not my back yard,(forgive me, Claire) but I was about 10' away from a cub that was standing erect on the edge of a woods and that encounter taught me that I will, by nature, never be a screamer. Totally unaware that the cub was there, suddenly I caught him/her looking directly into my eyes. The person with whom I was with had her back to the cub and when I barely was able to whisper,'bear', she, without moving an inch said, 'where', to which I barely breathed, 'there'. We walked away slowly, in silence, and darn if the little guy didn't follow us like a pet dog. The worry was, where was his mother? The little fella wanted food - he had already broken into a building for caramel corn the night before. Really cute, but those eyes...

    Last week at around 2P.M. on a sunny day, a coyote was trotting through a neighbor's yard and I've had to stop gardening in my own yard for fear the red fox that was staring at me some 20' away might not fear me. Times continue to change as we encroach on open space more and more.
    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Jane: Anything that might have been in your yard, or was in the yard next door or in the neighborhood, or someone else's yard or neighborhood somewhere, is an appropriate topic for this thread. And that can be stretched too.

    Bears are something we should know more about. Hopefully just black bears that are supposed to be reasonably good neighbors (not grizzlies).

    Claire

  • pixie_lou
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Wow I finally feel like I got my money shot. Hairy feeding on the suet while Downy patiently waits. You can really see the size difference in this shot.

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Excellent, pixie_lou! That is one huge hairy beast on the suet (at least from the viewpoint of a little downy).

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    You did get the right shot, PL, it perfectly shows the size difference. Timing is everything, good job.

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Merry Christmas,everyone!

    Jane :)

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    and I second what Jane said,

    Claire

  • spedigrees z4VT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I don't know if this is appropriate, as it's not a photograph and not in the garden (unless the Christmas tree counts) but I wanted to add my greetings. It does include critters at least!

    {{gwi:1055791}}

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Very appropriate, Sped, and best wishes to the artist/gardener. Looks loving and kind, nicely done!
    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    spedigrees: Christmas trees count as 'garden', of course, and your critters are always welcome. Very pretty scene.

    Claire

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    (Christmas lights are mobile features in the garden too....)

    Claire

    This post was edited by prairiemoon2 on Tue, Dec 25, 12 at 6:50

  • prairiemoon2 z6b MA
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Well, isn't this a great thread?! I have not been able to keep up with the birds this year and have been an infrequent visitor to the forums, but I did look over this thread today and I see I've been missing some great animal fun. Glad this group of bird and animal enthusiasts keeps the forum moving. Imagine Jane saw a bear! Glad I don't have to think about seeing any here, but they are very cute and surprising when you do see them. Spedigrees, very cute dogs that are now at your house. They already look like they are happy to be there and together. And Molie's new puppy is adorable of course. Who doesn't love a puppy? Claire, I always forget how close you are to the water until the leaves fall.

    Cannot believe that Christmas is tomorrow! Hope you all enjoy the holidays and look forward to more garden and critter talk in the New Year.

    Merry Christmas!

    :-)

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    It's all about birds. It is not adoration.

    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I suppose to a cat, like Ivy, angels are birds too - after all, they do have wings and they perch on trees. Maybe she's thinking they might taste like chicken?

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Boy, it's busy in the birch tree today! There were a dozen each of House Finches and American Goldfinches among nearly a throng of assorted other little guys, and one Song Sparrow - quite sure. Amazing how they disappeared in a nanosecond when the Cooper's Hawk flapped in way out back, and the moment he left, they returned en masse. Last week the hawk had a sparrow brunch under my window, but not today.

    It's time to plant some lettuce under lights. Nice to harvest a couple of crops indoors before the Goldfinches sport their spring color.

    Jane

  • spedigrees z4VT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    What a beautiful composition, Jane. This looks like the purrfect Christmas card to me! I love Ivy!

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    A nice winter scene, Jane, with the finches and the birch bark and the snow in the background. Here we just had wind and rain and rain and wind and wind and rain with temperatures near 50 degrees. Lots of birds, though, taking advantage of the warm water to bathe in the baths.

    Claire

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    The temperature finally dropped down to seasonal levels last night, and there was ice on the birdbaths this morning, including the heated birdbath! I think I've loaded too many Christmas lights with an automatic timer on the same circuit and it tripped sometime during the night. Same thing yesterday, so I took one set of lights off.

    I broke the ice on these birdbaths an hour or so before I took these pics, and a skin of new ice is forming on the new water. I didn't get all of the old ice out of the first birdbath - there was a rim around the ice and the rock. Eventually this bath will freeze solid and I'll abandon it until the next thaw because it's just too hard to empty when it's frozen. There will still be two shallow birdbaths open for the spa.

    Claire

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    A male Red-bellied Woodpecker just discovered the peanut/nugget feeder and I've seen him several times today.

    Not great pics on a gray day waiting for a storm, but I was surprised to see what looks like a scar on the breast. Maybe a healed wound? It appears on several photos.

    Also, to push the Christmas decoration connection, here's a spider with a bird or two and a few eggs:

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Lovely tree, Claire, with nice ornaments.
    The spot on the RB Woodpecker looks like a spot that Ivy has between her shoulder blades. Tiny dot, no hair, from an quick clobbering she took as a kitten from a sister. My guess, like yours, a wound mark.

    There will be no Cedar Waxwings here this year. This morning the Robins wiped out every berry within a few minutes.


    I know this is long, but it's close to the end of this thread for this year probably and I really like this one sequence:

    Just one more berry...

    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    That's a terrific series of robin photos, Jane. Nicely silhouetted against the snow (or processed, I can't tell, but it's very effective).

    Earlier this week a pack of robins came by and stared at the winterberry (empty!) and flew off without even touching it. This is the earliest the winterberry has been stripped - last year they feasted at the end of December, this year they've been nibbling since some time in November. We did have a cold spell then so the berries may have ripened then.

    My Christmas tree isn't real, it's not even green. It's a bare "ornament tree" that I overload each year. Hard to call it "garden" but this is a fantasy season in some ways so I take liberties (one of the advantages of starting a thread - you can set the rules however you want so long as GW doesn't get upset).

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    The Robin pictures are both snow and a little post-production definition. We had several inches the other day which stayed and the forecast for 5" of snow yesterday miraculously became 12" by this morning--joy. The neighbors are in California and I'm behind the snow blower for 2 driveways; what's wrong with this picture? Anyway, as seen below, other than flattening my pink scotch broom to the ground, fresh snow does let me know exactly where the deer have been. Seven of them.

    Jane (who today must trade Canon for Toro. Oy)

    This post was edited by claire on Sun, Dec 30, 12 at 10:44

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Deer tracks look so innocent, Jane, if only they just walked through without stopping to eat.

    I'm going to post a few pics on the landscape thread, but these are some bird-related ones.

    The peanut/nugget feeder is a smashing success - even when outstaged by the view.

    There was a Red-winged Blackbird on the feeder this morning!

    And a Red-breasted Nuthatch waiting its turn:

    This does seem to be the year of the Red-bellied Woodpecker on this forum.

    A flock of starlings appeared, checking out all possible food sources. Looking cute here on the suet.

    Claire

  • NHBabs z4b-5a NH
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Claire, I am not sure I've ever heard the term cute associated with starlings . . . ;>)

    Jane, that series of robin photos is absolutely stunning. I am always interested in the content of photos, but this month there have been a bunch of really lovely photos as far as composition and clarity.

    I'll submit some photos which are a bit more basic than artistic. I'm not sure how Claire gets such stunning turkey photos. Ours are very wily, and if I open a window or door to take a photo, they jog off in the opposite direction to the nearest shelter. So mine are taken from inside the house, and often through a combination of screen and glass. During the recent snowstorm, our local flock scooted across the road and down into the cornfield. I managed to catch a couple of photos before they disappeared into the evergreens to find shelter. They were moving much faster than usual; definitely looked unhappy about the weather.
    Arriving down the access drive into the field:

    From Turkeys in the snow December 27, 2012

    And halfway across, scuttling rapidly towards shelter:

    From Turkeys in the snow December 27, 2012

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    nhbabs: Nice photos of wild turkeys in the real world of winter, with snow and wind and cold and danger.

    The turkeys in my neighborhood are semi-domesticated - they've been watching me put seed on the ground for all of their lives, and they don't get scared if I keep a certain distance. If I get close (like I walk down the path where they're gathered) they'll move to the side looking a little worried but not panicked. Some of the neighbors also feed them - one woman gets them to take bread from her hand.

    Almost all of my photos are taken through a window. I've just dedicated a few windows to photos and I don't put screens on these (I don't open them during mosquito season). I have other screened windows to open in good weather.

    The turkeys here don't seem to like bad weather at all. They stay away until it clears up, or they hang around looking miserable.

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Claire: good that you have a pair of RBs visiting. I did here and then last year they brought their baby to the suet and the seed feeder (the one with cashews). Hope that happens for you. And yes, Cape Cod Bay can out stage most things. Maybe I should try a nugget feeder to lure the Blue Jays back.

    nhbabs: What wonderful open space you have! Fully agree, hydrangeas and conifers complement each other very well. I miss the turkey trotting that used to happen here.

    Today, a new visitor for this season: I think she's a Common Redpoll. Usually in multiples, but I only saw her. Other finches were here at the same time, so maybe it was meeting of cousins?
    Common Redpoll, female (I think)

    Mr. and Mrs. House Finch

    Nice to see the red and grey birds against the snow
    Mr. H. Finch

    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Jane, you're really becoming a fine photographer - first the robins and now the House Finches.

    Sure looks like a redpoll to me, although I haven't seen any this year.

    The Blue Jays occasionally visit the peanut/nugget feeder but they're not all that interested. It may be too difficult for them to cling to. The best thing I've found is to toss some peanuts on the ground. In fact, when I walk out in the morning carrying the peanut jar I hear the yelling "She's finally out! The peanuts are here!" They also like the wildlife/critter mix on the ground.

    Claire

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Thank you, Claire, I enjoy it so much as you do.

    The Blue Jays immediately left after I changed to only BOSS and safflower to discourage the sparrows. I have a new variety that includes nuts, so I hope they'll return when I change to the new seed mixture.

  • NHBabs z4b-5a NH
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Jane - I love the way the deep red buds on the tree in photo 3 of Mr. & Mrs. Finch echo their red feathers.

  • corunum z6 CT
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    It is nice to have color against the starkness of snow and this afternoon in the birch tree, I saw a flash of blue in the light of the early setting sun. He's the first Blue Bird I've seen since early last summer. Introduced new food today, so I hope he becomes a steady diner here.

    And because the sun was highlighting gold, this European Starling looked like art to me. Then again, lots of things do.

    Jane

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Very, very lovely, Jane. The bluebird perfectly complements the peeling bark on the birch, and the starling looks more like a shiny beetle than a bird (meant as a compliment to the bird, beetles can be amazingly beautiful).

    Claire

  • claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I just posted the first 2013 thread. I'll try to move all of the 2012 threads to the Gallery soon.

    Claire