This morning, Sandy Cheeks came for a visit, sat on top of the catio and put her right paw over her heart. She looked like, she was saying the Pledge To The Texas Flag. Too stinking cute! She’s born and raised in the Lone Star State. And she’s proud to be a Texan. YEEHAW!
Lots of feathered friends came over in our yard, all day. The feeders got emptied so quick, that I had to refill them twice. Next to the Blue Jays and the Northern Cardinals, we had a Bewick’s Wren, an American Goldfinch, two Black-capped Chickadees, White-winged Doves, Mourning Doves, Black-eyed Juncos, House Sparrows and a Red-bellied Woodpecker. A couple of squirrels ran to the feeder to grab some of the peanuts, before they jumped over the fence and into the neighbor’s tree. Yeah, I have that feeling that they didn’t like the Turkey Vulture circling over our house. A nice squirrel or bird snack had been fantastic for the big predator. But not on my watch, today. There’s plenty of mice and rats in the neighborhood. They taste as good as any rodent meat. 😉
These days, you’ll see more backyard bird photos on my blog. The weather is gray, and the temperatures are cool. I’m too lazy for a photo walk and do garden work in this kind of weather. These gloomy days are perfect for getting some work done in the house. But the feeders are full. And the local birds are in abundance in the yard. Mr. Squirrel was happy to see some peanuts, this morning. In the afternoon, the Blue Jays came over to take the rest from the slinky feeder.
This whole day was kinda gloomy with gray skies. But all the birds did show up, again. This time, they came over with a couple of Goldfinches, in the yard. Yesterday, I had some Nyjer seeds in the feeder. The finches love them. And they also attract the American Goldfinch. Last week on New Years Day, I had one sitting in the tree. Today a had a couple. Let’s see, if more will show up in the following days.
Since my ribs were in the slow cooker, I didn’t have to worry about cooking in the afternoon. Therefore I enjoyed the time in the backyard, before the girls came home from school. While I sat on the patio, lots of birds and Mr. Squirrel came over for a late lunch. There were Blue Jays, Crows, Grackles, House Sparrows, House Finches, a Yellow-rumped Warbler, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, White-winged Doves, etc. I’ve got some good captures of some of the birds.
That’s what it must sound like, when the Blue Jay announces to all the other Blue Jays, that I filled their slinky with peanuts. I had four Blue Jays and some curious other birds in my trees, this afternoon. And today, I tried something different. Usually the jays are very shy toward humans. But instead of standing behind the patio door, I sad on the chair, which is on the patio. I was about four to five feet away from the slinky. Two Blue Jays communicated with each other quietly, how they would get to the peanuts. They were very skittish, at first. But when they realized they were in no danger, by me sitting there very patiently and moving no muscle, they decided to go for it. One of them went for a peanut, and flew into the higher branches. The other one still wasn’t so sure. The first Blue Jay became bolder and picked up the peanut, it dropped on the patio earlier. The other three birds saw, I minded my own business. And then, one after the other Blue Jay came to the slinky for a snack. In the meantime, I lifted up my camera very slowly and got these shots of these nice backyard birds.
Oh, the sun felt sooo good today. And it was warm enough, that I didn’t need a jacket while being outside. My little feathered visitors loved the much drier and warmer temperatures as well. A Robin came by and sang it from the top of the tree: “🎼… The sun is back. It’s a beautiful day. … ♫ ♬”
After I refilled the bird feeder, one of the Blue Jays announced that the food is ready. We had quite a few Blue Jays in the trees. They swooped down, picked a peanut, flew back up and opened their “treasures” in the Bradford Pear trees. In the meantime, two dozen of Black-eyed Juncos and House Sparrows came to fill their little bellies. When the White-winged Doves arrived, it was time to share. I was surprised seeing a Gold Finch this early. Usually, they don’t come around until the beginning of February. In our yard that is. Out in the field, I usually see them all year around.
While the birds were having lunch, Sara and I noticed an unexpected visitor in the yard. A beautiful cat sat by the fence and watched the birds. It obviously looked for an easy meal. But when I stepped out on the deck for a moment, the show was over. The birds flew in the trees and nearby bushes, and the cat jumped over our fence and disappeared in the alley.
Every year in November, I’ve noticed that a couple of Turkey Vultures and one or two Red-tailed Hawks team up to soar the sky above our neighborhood. Sometimes, they stick around above our house to see, if there is a mouse, a small bunny or a song bird, they can swoop and have it for dinner. At this time of the year, I feed the smaller birds and the Eastern Cottontails more frequently. It also attracts the Birds of Prey. Not seldom, I have a Cooper’s Hawk or a Swainson’s Hawk sitting in my trees or on my fence. Since the community got bigger, due to more houses built in the surrounding neighborhood, wildlife finds its home in our backyard.