Thursday, April 08, 2010

The BIG Nest, Robin Wants the Right Twig, Clever Squirrels Part II

Dear Readers, there is "narration" for the Robin sequence plus more to it that hasn't been loaded on yet and a few other tidbits but I'm afraid I'm going to have to call it a night. I seem to be having a reaction to an antibiotic. Go ahead and look. Plus the writing does pick up as you get further down.

D. B.

Of all the yard birds I've been looking at on this day of rain, the Mourning Doves seem to be the ones on which raindrops bead. Are they particularly water repellent? Or is it their shape and stance? As when they eat they do tend to remain bent down. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that doves, like parrots and pigeons condition their feathers with powder instead of oil.
Whatever the case, a little shake, the water flies off, and the doves back is ready to start a new collection of droplets.
As I've mentioned before there is a baffle on this pole and I keep wondering how these guys are getting up there. Not that I don't love squirrels, I love everything, it's just that sometimes they need to be slowed down a bit so they share. Besides if you'll note the feeder is rather worse for wear. The squirrels chewed the metal cap off which held the feeder in place. I then tied it to the bowl with twine--not durable but handy, what can I say? Then yesterday that was chewed through and I was reduced to wiring it on.
The male Cowbirds arrived a few days ago. This is the first female I've seen. In my yard, they predate Chipping Sparrow nests. But as Chipping Sparrows as a species have fallen victim to some particularly virulent diseases the last few years, then add the Cowbirds, and so far not one Chipping Sparrow has yet appeared this Spring.
Anyone want to take a shot at species for this bird? It's larger than a Junco and smaller than a Robin.
There looks to be two pairs of Doves in residence this Spring. Doorstep and Friend are sitting in their usual spot in the Maple in the foreground, and I believe the young couple who reticent to show public affection are on the back wires.
When I walked past the patio door, what should I see? But a squirrel sliding down the very wet slippery pole.
There she is using that convenient baffle to stop her slide all the way down the pole to the ground. How handy of me to provide it.

"OH, someone is watching!"
Actually I'd begun to wonder if the squirrels had a pact in which they swore not to let me see just exactly how they were doing it. She goes up a little slides back down.
Each time she gets a little further up on the wet pole. I'm assuming the act of her climbing is drying it off making it easier with each try until she hits a full wet spot.
Finally she manages to get her teeth on the top curve.
And once there, she turns into demon squirrel and looks ready to defend her position at all costs. It seems early but it looks like she may be lactating.
There has been, I think, a squirrel in my attic. A something anyway, with some scampering and EXTREMELY loud chewing involved. I put a live trap up there due to the chewing and of course whoever is doing it is completely uninterested in going for the peanut butter inside it. For about a week I've begun to hear soft whining noises along with the scampering and chewing. Perhaps I'd better investigate further so I don't accidentally trap a Mom up there, who I'd let back out of course but wouldn't want anyone to go hungry in the meantime.
Donegal Browne

No comments: