July 16, 2009

Bird feeding

I have been feeding the birds since we came here. Until about a week ago I just threw out some seed on the ground, twice a day, and we enjoyed watching a lot of different birds having breakfast while we were having ours. Lately though, a lot of White-wing Doves are scooping up the majority of the seed and many of the smaller birds don't seem to get a chance.

So I bought a little feeder that only the smaller birds would be able to eat from, or so I thought. Dan welded a nice stand out of our supply of "ranch steel", and I thought I would be home free: the doves would still get their share on the ground, but not drive away the finches, pyrrholuxia, grossbeaks, and the cardinal. Well, I had underestimated the guile and persistence of doves.

But, human ingenuity did prevail. We made a wire cage around the feeder so only smaller birds can get to the seed, and had to add wire to the top as well as the doves slid down the feeder from above. I think I have them figured out now. Today I added another feeder plus the required hardware, for just sunflower seed, and Dan modified the stand.

The nest of the Hooded Oriole, the beautiful little bag hanging from electrical wire on the porch, is finished. For the finale, she lined the whole thing with dog fur. There are 4 eggs in it as of today. The Canyon Towhee in the grapevine quit at 3 eggs and is sitting on them.

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