Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Birds and Frogs and This and That--It's Earth Day!!

 I absolutely LOVE this photo. Terry was sitting in his recliner which is next to one of our patio doors in the living room.  He caught movement out of the corner of his eye and called we over to see what was on the deck.  I looked through the window...nothing new.  Birds at the feeders then I caught a little movement near the floor.  I spotted this little guy.  He seemed to be waving as I snapped his picture.  Amazingly small, he is about the size of a dime.  That's TINY!!

After a few minutes he hopped away, heading for the pond I think.

We started hearing the frogs singing in the pond pretty early this year.  They are pretty noisy and sing in the day and in the night..ALL NIGHT...and LOUDLY.  Terry was determined to get some pics.  He spotted 4 large and 4 small frogs...all in this position.  After a few minutes it became apparent that we are going to have A LOT of tadpoles, lol.  There is a large fish community that I suspect will eat a lot of the tinies, but as those frogs get bigger we'll be catching them and carting them down to the river.  It's very upsetting to watch a frog lay in wait for a Koi to swim by and become the frog's supper.  Turn around is fair play, I guess, but frogs are free and Koi are not! It has been pretty interesting watching the frogs.  When they sing, the skin under their lower jaw puffs out like a balloon then you hear them sing. If you have been a long time reader here, you know that I LOVE frogs.  Absolutely!

 The blue birds have been here all winter.  I have a meal worm feeder hanging from the overhang in front of the patio window in the living room.  Even when there was a lot of snow, it was easy to open the door and add the worms.  We have several feeders in the front with a variety of seeds and suet and keep it all supplied all winter.

We make an effort to attract the blue birds and have been lucky to have a couple of broods each spring.  It goes beyond feeding and supplying appropriate housing.  You must be willing protect them as best you can from the Evil English Sparrows that fight over housing and have been known to steal Blue Bird eggs from the nest and drop them on the ground.  They will also kill Blue Birds if  they can.

This is one of several houses that we have for the Blue Birds to choose.  It is usually the house of choice and has made a nesting place for a Blue Bird couple for at least 7 years.  This year we thought we had a couple.  However, when they were making their nest, sparrows took over and made THEIR nest right on top of the Blue Bird nest.

Our blues decided to move to another house.  We thought be had a match.  But no luck.  So far, it's not happening.

I'm not too upset though because these houses are near the pond and we have a lot of work to do out there this year.  We usually defer to the Blue Birds until their family leaves the nest.  Since they have as many as 3 per year, it can deter us from working in the area until well into Spring.

BUT!!!  I read an article that mentioned that Blues will nest in natural cavities in trees.  Since I have seen them flying in the back yard, and not just bathing and drinking at the pond, I decided to investigate.  Sure enough, I think we have a nest in the old Maple tree in the back yard.  They we constructing a nest, so hopefully we'll have more babies.  Even if we don't, I'm happy to supply their food.

I'll be putting out the Oriole feeders pretty soon.  They feed until their babies are hatched, then we see them but not at the feeders.   We have a large variety of birds.  The pond is a huge draw for them and we spend a lot of time watching them.

And just a note here...please do what you can to save our earth.  Re-purpose when possible.  Send whatever you can to be recycled to keep it out of the landfill. Don't burn if you can avoid it.  Find a joy in nature.


Janine @ Rainbow Hare said...

Great photos. I hope your little waving visitor doesn't get eaten. And the blue birds are beautiful. We don't have them here and I hadn't realised they are so blue :)

Momma Bear said...

I love working in our yard too! So many birds to see. I hear way more than I see though.. I can't tell you how thrilling it is to see a pair of eagles flying in circles above the house! Last year one got treed by the locals (crows) they kept him up there for at lest 2 hours! They took turns dive bombing him to keep him put. And made such a racket!

Thoeria said...

Just googled bluebirds, Carol....and they are gorgeous! Don't think I've ever seen anything like them here....little brown sparrows....massive noisy hardedas and loads of others....but can honestly not recall ever seeing these pretties.
You coffee towels are lovely :)

Magpie's Mumblings said...

I would love to see a real bluebird sometime. I know they are in our area, but there's not many of them so a sighting is really rare. No frogs to look in our window either - not unless they want to climb up a four story building!!

Barbara said...

I learned from this post. We have a lot of the same critters, thank you for the info. It is an early noisy pond year here too! Thanks for your visit to my blog, and for commenting on critters of a different kind.

Penny said...

What a lovely Earth Day posting! Our frogs were out there making tons of noise way back in March - which made me wonder if we were going to have an early summer. We'll see... There are LOTS of frogs in the small pond. I haven't been down to the larger pond yet but I'm sure its teeming, from the serenades we had all last month *smile*.

kathyinozarks said...

enjoy the photos-so glad you stopped by my pages and found me

Beedeebabee said...

What a lovely post, Carol. I really enjoyed reading about your frogs, fish and backyard birdies. Once in a blue moon I'll see a toad in the garden, but guess what I have somewhere near the house?...An owl! I've been here for 33 years and only once have I ever heard an owl hooting at night till a couple of months ago. I hear him frequently now. I think he must be in the huge pine tree over at my neighbor's house. I wish I could see him! xo