Welcome to my Bird Blog!

Welcome to all my fellow bird lovers and gardeners! I'm so glad you stopped by.

Migratory bird populations have taken a nose dive in the past 40 years. But you can help bring their numbers back by creating beneficial, beautiful and fun habitats in your own backyard. Discover favorite plants and environments that shelter and feed colorful songbirds, as well as how to make them feel welcome by offering their preferred natural foods.

Grandma Pearl
(Connie Smith)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Learning Who's Boss!

Young Hairy Woodpecker has made it to the bird feeder all by itself.  However, other birds are quick to shoo it away.  So Hairy retreats to a nearby tree trunk, its old familiar safe place.  As the bird feeder clears out, Hairy tries again, and is quickly rebuffed when another bird sweeps in and pushes it aside.  Back to the old familiar tree trunk, but this time Hairy is rewarded when he/she finds a tasty insect!

Hairy is learning that there is a hierarchy in the bird world that has to be followed.  He/she is also learning that patience can be a virtue.  There's also the revelation that there are other food sources besides the seeds at the bird feeder!  Finally, the bird feeder is free of other birds long enough for Hairy to grab a seed and fly back to its favorite oak tree trunk.

Hairy's parent flies in and lands on a nearby tree trunk, and young Hairy quickly flies over to greet Mom or Pop.  The familiar "please feed me" cry is uttered, but this time Hairy's parent does not respond with food.  The only response is a disinterested glance at the sky. Hairy continues to plead, but is refused each time.  It's a hard lesson, but a necessary one.  The automatic feeding machine has been unplugged!  Hairy is now on its own, and will  have to learn all the tricks of the trade by watching Mom and Pop searching under tree bark and hammering away at probable insect sources.

Good Luck Hairy!

Grandma Pearl
Natural Ways to Keep Woodpeckers from Damaging Your House

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Hairy Woodpecker Youngsters

While I was observing the blue jay family dynamic posted below, I realized that a hairy woodpecker family was undergoing the same feeding rituals.  Mom and Pop hairy woodpecker were grabbing seeds from the tray feeder and flying to a nearby oak tree trunk.  There a waiting youngster nervously circled the trunk in jerking motions, while uttering a high-pitched ‘chick’ sound.

The parents tried many times to lure the young hairy woodpecker to the feeder, to no avail.  Young hairy refused to budge from the safety of that nearby oak tree trunk.  It did retreat into the woods further at times, clinging nervously to the trunks of other trees.  Its natural survival instinct is overpowering right now.

As of this morning, the parents of young hairy are still doing their best to keep it fed and happy.  All the while they are continuing the routine so as to bolster hairy’s confidence.

Eventually the youngsters will overcome their natural instincts and become confident enough to approach the feeder and feed themselves.  After all, it took a long time to entice them to leave the safety of the nest they had called home.  And even more time for them to become used to actually flying short distances on their own.

It’s a big step to venture out on your own in such a big world.   As they practice flying longer distances each time, they will find their self assurance and in turn their self reliance.  In many ways, birds and humans share these things in common.  I guess that is why I find wild birds so fascinating.

Grandma Pearl
June 24, 2011
Tips to Keep Woodpeckers From Damaging Your House