This blog is about my garden and the outdoors. I am new to photography but I am trying to show some of the pretty things that grow here in Michigan. I love the wild things who visit me and I dont mind if they eat a bit here and there. I like it more if they let me take their picture. As time goes on I think I will try to show you around the beautiful area that I live in as well as my garden. I try to use my own pictures as much as possible but will also use pictures from the web. If I inadvertently use your photo or work without permission please email me and I will remove it or give credit if you prefer. I will give credit when I know who the owner is. I would ask that anyone using my pictures do the same.
... I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.......Psalm23:6
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Friday, April 20, 2018

Can it be here?.......

After the long spell of ice and snow the sun is finally out and it is actually warm. Well after such cold weather it feels warm. Actually it's only in the 40s but the sun is warm. The paths that Gerry dug in the snow for the Robins has thawed to the ground.
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I see little spots where little critters have been digging in the wet soil, that's good. The news has even been asking people to feed the birds and how to feed Robins who do not eat seeds. Apparently a lot have been hit by cars because they fourage by roadsides. Poor things are so hungry and many migrating birds have died. Nature can be cruel. Survival of the fittest or luckiest if they find back yard birders. My Robin was grateful I know that much.
The sky is blue and the buds have survived. I have seen Squirrels eating them. I was going to go out and clean up the mess on the deck. All the seeds that got lost under the snow are laying there. They will rot and make them sick. Right now though the Squirrels are doing clean up for me and the stuff has not been there that long. This weekend is supposed to get up to (gasp) the 50s, perfect for me to work outside. I sure hope things move along from there.
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It looks as though the Crows are staying. Once again it looks like they are trying to set up residence in the neighbours pine tree. It's a goodly tall tree and they probably like that.
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I see them coming and going and I hope no one disturbs them this time. I know they will kill other baby birds and thats sad, but that's life I guess. Everyone has to eat. I just wish it were not so. I like the Crows, they are intelligent and clever. They are getting braver and I saw one today close to my deck cleaning up stuff along with the Squirrels. Maybe by next year they will feel more at home. I stopped putting out food for them because they disappeared for a couple of years. I would supply them with hamburgher and they loved it.
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The Holly berries are all gone so the Robin or someone else who likes Berries found them as we had hoped. A relief because it was laden in berries but buried. Gerry tried to get the ice and snow off for them. Well she has not been back the last two days so maybe she can finally sit on a nest and unload those eggs she is carrying. She was so big
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I sure hope she survived.
The birds will cut back now they can find food in other places and I won't put so much out so the Squirrels will look elsewhere. He he like Buds Tulips when they begin to shoot through. He will get his live trap out and begin transporting them. I don't like that because who knows if they have babies but he does not care about things like that. He is a very nice man but really is not into animals like I am. He does not like them when they eat his stuff. I don't care about that. I do appreciate it if they at least stop for a photo opp though. I think it may be the rabbits but last two years someone ate my Hosta in the Fall. If it's deer then they better stop long enough for a picture it's only fair.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Finally some Action.................

Birds that is. We have had some terrible Spring weather. The snow just will not quit. Worse still is that it rained on top and froze, then snowed again. I felt so bad for the Robins who are full of eggs, sitting in the Mountain Ash trying to find a withered berry or two.
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Someone told me that birds like cat food. So I put out dried cat food. What a success. Not only the Robin ate it but so many others came down for it. Cats are getting a bit worried I think as their supply is dwindling. It's on my shopping list.
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The local Starling population spend most of their day in the surrounding trees waiting for me to refill the feeders. I have resorted to putting it on the ground.
I am putting out nuts, raisins and bread and any scraps I can find. I won't be using the nuts for some time and they get stale. May as well be of some use.
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The Blue Jays have had to take turns with the Grackles and Starlings. They are all about the same size so don't intimidate each other too much. Talking of that, one Squirrel got really pissed off at a Crow who had the nerve to come on the deck. It chased the Crow away.
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The Crows are shy about coming down and only do so very reluctantly, I am not sure why. Hunger tends to ward off fear though and they started to take the chance when I threw out some Chicken stew. I added some bread and vegetables. Got to have a menu to suit everyone.
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I see Seagulls fly over every day but they never come in. Then they spotted the stew and for the first time ever they came in to feed. I am sure Bud next door is doing his nut.
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Such beautiful birds, how do they stay so clean? I know they are mean. I know they will kill other birds and have attacked pets etc but, they have their place and I welcome everyone. They are hungry, they need food. So I supply it. For now.............they only have ever come in for human food. So I can control this, same with the Crows.
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They are so beautiful I can't get over how clean they are.
Well my camera needed it's batteries charged and so I went and downloaded stuff on the computer. I heard tapping on the side of the house near the Window. I couldn't see anything but from experience believed it to be a Woodpecker. I tried to creep out but no one there. Then I saw it in the tree. Naturally my camera was out of action. I quickly loaded it again and went in search........
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I couldn't get a good shot because of the trees and by the time I put on boots I knew he would be gone. So this is it.
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The little birds have been staying away pretty much while this lot have been in. I did fill up things for them and the Chickadee does not care who is here. He says this is all mine.
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The Cardinals have been every day and I got loads of pictures of them both. I can only take so many pictures of the same birds so now wait for perfect opportunities. Like the two of them together. That does not happen often. The only others I have seen would be the Titmouse and this guy. Once I stop feeding the big guys they will be back.......they tend to come at the end of the day when everything settles down.
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The weatherman says it should warm up at the end of the week. The snow is covered in Ice. I tried to get the Holly leaves up for the Robin to no avail. It was solid.
That's when I tried the cat food idea that someone told me about. Mrs Robin is so fat, she must lay her eggs soon or she will pop.

Monday, April 9, 2018

RedWing Blackbird........

Remember I was sort of surprised to see a loan Redwing Blackbird in my garden not so long ago? I did not expect to see him again because we just do not see them in town. They tend to stay in the wet areas across the main road. Well, yesterday, imagine my surprise when he showed up with a bunch of Grackles. Everyone got along just fine and there were also a few stray Starlings with them.
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I love the Starlings, such pretty birds. Yes and the Grackles. They may be mean (so I am told) but they sure are beautiful. When at my feeder they seem very well behaved around the other birds. I doubt anyone would challenge them, look at those beaks.
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Starlings have sharp beaks too.
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The colours on both these types of birds are like those of Peacocks. They shimmering iridescent blues and greens. So beautiful in the sun. I know most people chase them away but I don't. When I see them flock into a tree I will go put out extra food because I know they won't leave until it's all gone. Then I refill for everyone else.
Blue Jays will come in very cautious like when they are around. They are bigger but are timid they seem so anyway. Any of these birds fly at the slightest movement from me (in the window). So it's hard to get good pictures. The peanuts tempt them though.
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Everyone loves the Peanuts.
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I am Wondering if this is a female RedWing and maybe that's why she is allowed to stay? The males seem to have a redder band.
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Everyone was getting along and not squabbling as they usually do. Got to love them.
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I have been keeping the cats inside. They don't care for the cold and so maybe that's why the birds are back. Anyway, the Blue Jays were loving the critter food. I need to go get some suet. Poor little Woodies have to be content looking for bugs in my bushes,
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Yum, what shall I eat first?
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Now if only these two would have faced the other way it would have been a good picture.
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She is feeling sassy
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Well I will now go and fill up the feeders and hope to see some small birds come in. I have so many bird pictures it's crazy but I still want to try for those perfect shots.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

April Fools...........no kidding...........

April is supposed to be sunshine and new flowers, and maybe showers to get rid of all the yucks. Not this year. A winter storm came roaring through leaving us with about a foot of snow. Already melting though so there is that. Gerry went out and cleared a Poodle path so the girls could run. A lovely heavily pregnant Robin came by and appreciated his efforts.
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Poor girl, I hope she has a nest handy she looks about due to drop a few eggs.
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The sun came out and with that a few birds came to the feeders. The cats still don't want to be outside so maybe they are getting braver.
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Chickadees are always a reliable visitor and this guy was having a tough time what to eat first
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The little finch had no such problem and stuck to the feeder
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Off in the Maple tree a small Woodpecker was busy. I hear him every morning early on..........
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Then came the Cardinals, Mr and Mrs today........the birds love the grapevine, the one Bud hates. Well I like it not only for privacy but also because when its cold or raining the birds shelter in there and eat their seeds.
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I got a whole bunch of Mr Cardinal before she arrived. He got a bit blown around up in the tree.
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He soon came down to a spot of sun on the deck.
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Then the Mrs arrived.
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The buds are popping on the trees so I hope they didn't get too cold.
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The Squirrels nest in my tree disappeared. Probably got blown away, maybe they moved in with the neighbours. Bud's going to be kept busy this year as we already have loads of the critters and he does not like them. They eat his Tulips and/or dig them up and plant them at my house.
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Chickadee making use of the vines to stay warm while he eats
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I saw a Mourning Dove go down to the pond for a drink. There is a rock in there now and they seem to enjoy going down to that. I saw the Robin do that the other day. I sure hope no one falls in.
It is good to see the sun, the snow looks beautiful (but I have seen enough thanks) and good to see a few birds come back. Now if I can keep the cats inside and the squirrels away maybe I will see more. I need some newcomers ones we rarely see. That would be nice.