The Uncaged Bird -

mumstheword
Morganna said:
 Then those are boys! Females stay green. I'm not seeing any right now. Could be timing but I do remember getting a long break between the first male arrivals and then seeing females who arrive later to nest.

 Both of mine had totally white throats and their backs are green.  Now I'm seeing a ring of red at the bottom of both of their necks.  I never see more than 2 at a time (like every year I've lived here).


Morganna

OK so, the little male wren, I assumed gave up on the small house with all of the heavy rains a couple of weeks ago. Now either he is back or its a new Lothario singing his heart out and adding twigs to the house. I don't see any interest in the bigger wren house which has a safer location but I'm watching. I haven't seen a female yet but he is has an entire repertoire so I'm sure he will capture a heart.

Caught a glimpse of a hummingbird so maybe its timing.

Spotted a beautiful red finch feeding a baby high on a power line outside my window.

Baby blue jays are showing up looking fuzzy and bewildered.


Morganna

I posted once before about  wrens bringing small sacs of spider eggs to their nest. When they hatch the baby spiders eat the tiny mites that attack the wren chicks. Then the white sacs are used to gather and remove the bird droppings in the nest. Tidy and ingenious little birds. I saw the male master builder dropping off a sac in the nest but so far, despite his singing the entire Beatles collection, no date for the prom.

For those who are looking for them, you won't find them at your feeders, as they eat insects. The only way to attract these tenors is to break down and hang a wren house in the yard. Then sell tickets to the concert.


Morganna

It's Love! He found his sweetheart and they are rebuilding the nest together! Singing his heart out!


Morganna

His singing made me think of this song, and the minute I played it, I realized it still makes me cry. Loved it since I was a child.


lynnl199
lynnl199 said:
Just had first hummer sighting this season in SO- near Underhill Field.

 Finally, first hummer since April has returned to the feeder. Kids can’t be far behind.


Morganna
lynnl199 said:
 Finally, first hummer since April has returned to the feeder. Kids can’t be far behind.

 I've only seen one since the early arrival. Everything seems off schedule this season.


sac

Re earlier mention of groundhogs and woodchucks, I believe that they are two different names for the same animal.


Morganna
sac said:
Re earlier mention of groundhogs and woodchucks, I believe that they are two different names for the same animal.

 They are. I love to call them woodchucks which is less commonly used here but I think its a cuter name and they always make me want to pick them up and hug them. No I haven't tried and yes I think they would not like it.


joanne

fascinating archaeology research article suggests that ancient platypus-like animals gave us the ability to carry our babies in uteruses rather than lay eggs etc. (I haven’t read the whole article, am migrainey today) 

But the platypus doesn’t have nipples; it feeds milk to the young in its pouch via folds in the lining. (I’m not clear on how the secretions get into the joey’s mouth)

Maybe there’s more to our fascination with certain birds and animals than we realise?

http://purelyfacts.com/question/5/which-is-heavier-a-platypus-or-a-woodchuck?DDA=90&DDB=121


Morganna

Hummingbird and Honeysuckle!  It appears to be a girl or a youngster as there is no ruby throat.


mumstheword
Morganna said:
Hummingbird and Honeysuckle!  It appears to be a girl or a youngster as there is no ruby throat.

 That's what mine look like.

So, why would a goldfinch chase away a hummingbird from a feeder so it could sit there and drink the sugar water?


Morganna

mumstheword said:

 That's what mine look like.

So, why would a goldfinch chase away a hummingbird from a feeder so it could sit there and drink the sugar water?

 Really, I never knew goldfinches had a sweet tooth?



Morganna

The wren babies have hatched! Last evening I heard the chirping! Once again I will watch over the next 2 weeks to see if I can catch the first flight of the fledglings. I have not been fortunate enough to catch them, but hope springs eternal.




Morganna

On a sorrowful note, Magical, the sweet female tuxedo who found me and my garden many years ago, has died. As I never allow my cats outside, but she was terrified of living indoors with us I cared for her on her terms, provided her with a 3 car garage, a front porch, heated houses, igloos, the best food and most of all love. Our goodbye at the vet was heartbreaking and I'm having a difficult time healing, but I will memorialize her with pictures on this thread. She loved to sit at my feet when I went outside for my morning coffee, she gained the courage after several years to climb up in the hammock with me, she pressed her nose against the French doors on the front porch when she saw me do a late night check in the winter and we sat on the front porch on dark snowy evenings. She was loving and devoted but not strong enough to beat cancer. Good bye dear friend. My garden seems empty without you.




sac

We need the 'sad' emoticon for this.  So sorry that you lost your furry friend!


Morganna

sac said:

We need the 'sad' emoticon for this.  So sorry that you lost your furry friend!

 Thank you @sac.


joanne

Both D and I are sad to read your news. Magical seems to have had a life of wonder and feline content, with your thoughtful care. What gorgeous eyes, and dignified bearing; what magnificent coat!

May memories of happier times bring comfort. 


mumstheword

Morganna said:

mumstheword said:

 That's what mine look like.

So, why would a goldfinch chase away a hummingbird from a feeder so it could sit there and drink the sugar water?

 Really, I never knew goldfinches had a sweet tooth?

 In years past, I would only see them when they would perch on the feeder post.  This year, they go from the post and hop on the hummer feeder and sip a drink or two!


Morganna

I'm not seeing goldfinches but the wrens are scolding loudly every time I venture into the garden. I've had pairs who ignored me and cheerfully fed the hatchlings. I heard chirping days ago but they've been  quiet so I guess they are still very little. When they get bigger they get frantic between every feeding. I'd better give them their space for the next 2 weeks.


Morganna

Lots of feeding going on.



Morganna

Its quiet since yesterday. I think my wren family has left the nesting house. Once again I did not see the first flight.

But the hummingbirds are very active. Sipping from the Humzinger as the honeysuckle is taking a break with less flowers. I saw 2 hummers this morning with one of them buzzing around the red annual salvia.


mumstheword

My hummers are bullies -- they keep chasing the butterflies away from the butterfly bushes!


Morganna

mumstheword said:

My hummers are bullies -- they keep chasing the butterflies away from the butterfly bushes!

 My butterflies are enjoying the bushes which are in the front of the house.  Just one of the beauties feasting outside my window.


joanne

This is such a pretty photo, and the new way it appears on the t.o.c page with the thread title is so inviting! Morganna, did you amend the title post in any way for the pic to show there as well? Edited to add: oh I see: that pic seems to have moved now. So maybe so it just reflects last post.

(When I opened the the thread, the first item I saw was Magic in the green hammock. Sigh.)


Morganna

joanne said:

This is such a pretty photo, and the new way it appears on the t.o.c page with the thread title is so inviting! Morganna, did you amend the title post in any way for the pic to show there as well? Edited to add: oh I see: that pic seems to have moved now. So maybe so it just reflects last post.

(When I opened the the thread, the first item I saw was Magic in the green hammock. Sigh.)

 Jamie is tinkering with showing photo posts in the title. They disappear as soon as the next person post. Maybe there is a way to add photos to the title although they would take up some room. Maybe I'll try!


jamie

Right now we can only pic up the post in the most recent comment.  At some point I hope to show the most recent post in the thread - but some restructuring of how the images are saved needs to be done first.  Might be another week or so before this happens.


joanne

It's prettier with the pics rather than the the words of the last post, well in my opinion. 

(This morning as I opened the thread, Magic was smiling from the bird-bath)

The ducks went crazy as D was feeding them just now! We're having a very warm spell in the middle of the dying days of winter. It's very dry, we really need several days of good steady rain, so I suspect there might be some early mating underway. 


Morganna

I'm busy with the hummingbirds coming and going. Hmm. Let's leave a hummingbird up there on the post for a bit.



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