My Backyard Accommodations

Last weekend I participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC). It made me realize how much our yard had become a local bird haven. Mostly it is visited by our regulars who most would consider common. That includes House Sparrows, Juncos, Flickers, Stellar Jays, Anna Hummingbirds and not to ever be discounted my Crow family.  Note the photo above of a raider on the feeder.  Makes me smile every time I see it.

That is right a feeder is a destination in the bird world and ours is supposed to keep large birds off.  Ha!!  Of course we have a squirrel baffle to keep those raiders out.  They have finally given up trying to get up there and just eat the grain that falls in the flower bed. That was after they chewed on the plastic thing a bit.

I dispute that my birds are common. One can chase their tail feathers for days looking for those rare type birds or views. When we do that in life we miss out on real treasure. That is why I say to ramble without technology. I technically break that rule by having two cameras (digital) and my smart phone. However, I keep the phone in my pocket except to use the camera or as an emergency phone.  No phone booths are found today or we would never knock on a neighbor’s door to ask for help.  Times have changed!

My list from last weekend was of 8 species in alphabetical order; Anna Hummingbird, American Crow, Black-caped Chickadee, European Starling, Dark-eyed Juncos, Spotted Towhee, House Finch, and House Sparrow.

The Anna hangs out in our neighbors Douglas Fir that borders on our fence and their feeder. They are like little super sonic jets buzzing around and never too shy to scold us if the feeder is not to their satisfaction.

The feeder on a cold morning
The feeder on a cold morning
Hummy in the fir tree
Hummy in the fir tree

Every yard needs a bird bath. It is a place for the little birds to fluff around and get a bath. Of course they need water to drink like us and then maybe it is a good place to court your girlfriend. See the crow pair together below enjoying its ambiance.

Crow Lovers drinking together
Crow Lovers drinking together

We have not only lovers but we have the villains too. In our case it was a small hawk who moved into the area one summer. He figured out that we had lots of little birds who could be a quick snack. The little ones were smarter than him. They hid in the barberry. Mr Hawk could not penetrate the thorns and gave up in frustration. Here he is on the fence trying to look un-ruffled.

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Hawk feeling deprived

Then there was the time I had a special visitor. A prehistoric scream comes to us and when I looked out there was a Pileated Woodpecker. He was attacking our feeder and hanging out on the old stump we have. Can’t beat that for any backyard bird watcher.

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Woody Woodpecker visiting our feeder

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There you have it. There are special moments to be had every where and every day.  Just be sure to be looking out for them. Wide open eyes to what nature provides is a treasure to be protected.

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