Sunday, March 25, 2018

Lovin' my Bluebirds!

Hello friends! So much has happened since my last post! The Bluebird nest was completed while we were on vacation. Below is how it looked right before we left for a week. It's a very nice looking nest...if you ask me!



We got back from vacation last Monday.  I was hoping she would wait until we came back to start laying her eggs...and she did!  She laid her first egg last Thursday. On Friday, my husband checked the bird box and he didn't see anything. However, when he positioned his phone farther in the box to snap a pic....there were two eggs! Then, Saturday she laid a third egg and today, the fourth egg!  My husband thinks she'll lay a total of five eggs but, I think she'll lay seven! She's eating well and they are watching the nest closely like good parents. I'll keep you updated!






Now, for a little bit about our vacation. We took a trip to Houston to visit friends and go to the rodeo. It was a lot of fun! We saw Keith Urban & Garth Brooks play at the rodeo!  This was my husbands first time to Houston & he really like it....except for the traffic. We stayed at our friend's home in Galveston. It was beautiful! Time was short so we didn't do much birding. But, my friends took us to a well kept secret place that had Peacocks! There are beautiful! The Peacocks were very friendly and were not modest at all!  The males were showing off their beautiful feather tails, known as a "train".  Below are just a few of the hundred pics that I took of them! I'd like to go back to Galveston and attend one of their awesome birding events!








We had a great time in Texas!
Great time, Great food, & Great friends!


Sunday, March 11, 2018

Nest Watching

Day 1 of Nest Building 3/07/18 
This week has been a busy week! The bluebirds started building their nest on Wednesday, March 7! I spotted the female going in the bird box with pieces of straw.  On Thursday, there were pieces hanging out of the nest box! So we knew there was some building going on. When my husband went home for lunch, he checked the box and sent me the first pic of the nest! That night we were able to start the official "Nest Watch" on https://nestwatch.org/  Anytime, you find a nest and commit to watching it - you should send your observations to The Cornell Lab of Orinthology. You can become a "citizen scientist" and your data will helpthem track trends in birds including when they nest, how many eggs laid,  how many hatched, and how many survived.  This is a nationwide tracking status. They study the current conditions of the bird population and how it changes. There is so much interesting information on this site. I highly recommend reading it even if you haven't found a nest yet. You'll be ready for when you do!

Now back to BackerNest1 (that's what I've called it).  On Saturday morning, I was able to spend a few hours observing and the female was super busy! Apparently, "The Hustle is Real"!  She is ready to get this nest built and lay some eggs!  This momma ain't messin' around!

She went back and forth with straw bits and pieces....and then she showed up with a beak full! I was excited to get a few pics of her hardwork!



Lastnight, we had quite a bit of rain so this Sunday morning wasn't quite as productive. Maybe due to the wet nesting materials. But, I did see some building going on.  She should have the nest completed possibly tomorrow and then will start laying her eggs shortly after. Bluebirds lay one egg a day and usually will lay 5-7 eggs.  I will keep you posted. 






Don't forget to check out my Facebook page and Twitter for recent updates.  Thank you for following me & the birds!

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Bluebird Happiness!

I got up bright and early to watch for the bluebirds. They didn't let me down! When I looked out the window there was one sitting on the hook underneath the bird house.  I grabbed the camera and snapped a few pics. Tomorrow, I'll open the bird house to check for signs of a nest being built. 







Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Great Backyard Bird Count starts tomorrow!

Are you ready? It's time for the "Great Backyard Bird Count" February 16th - 18th! 
I’ve posted a few helpful tips for counting and a video to get you excited about counting! 



Tips for Counting: 
  • Count for at least 15 mins. but you can count for as long as you'd like - just be sure to record how long you counted. 
  • If you're watching your backyard and you see three Cardinals, then five Cardinals, then two Cardinals, you would report them as five Cardinals, not ten.
  • Recording your Count - make a separate count sheet for each day that you count. You need a separate count sheet for each location that you count (even if it's the same day). You can submit multiple count sheets on the same day from the same location if the two counts were at different times. For instance, early morning and late afternoon.
  •  After you've finished counting and ready to turn in your results, go to the Great Backyard Bird Count website at BirdCount.org and click "Submit Observations" on the homepage.
  • If this is your first time participating, you'll need to create a free GBBC account and follow directions to record your count.
  • Below is a link for a complete and printable check list for counting.  
http://gbbc.birdcount.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/2016Updates_English_DownloadableInstructions.pdf
I hope you have great weather for counting! Check back this weekend, I'll be posting my results and pictures! I'm hoping for some bluebirds! Enjoy the weekend & happy birding! 


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Welcome February!

Can you believe it...February is here! There are so many things going on this month! 
  • Bluebird Houses 
  • The Great Backyard Bird Count 
  • The Olympics
  • Valentines Day (for the love birds!💕)


Today, we hung our Bluebird House! I'm pretty excited about it! This is our first bluebird house. We had bluebirds a few years ago but, last year we didn't see very many. So, I'm going to try to attract them back to our yard by providing them a home!  I've been reading and mealworms seem to be their 'go to' snacks! I'm going to pick some up tomorrow. If you have any tips on attracting bluebirds to your yard, please feel free to post them here. I'll also keep you updated on what I find works best. 


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🐦  The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC)

The GBBC starts next weekend, February 16-19, 2018!  Please participate in this! It's a lot of fun and you can watch for only a few minutes or for as many hours as you'd like!  Scientist and bird enthusiasts can learn a lot by knowing where birds are. Learn more about the GBBC by clicking on the links below. I'll be posting my results next week! I'm blocking off a few hours to watch my yard and possible sight a few new birds!





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❤ Happy Valentines Day! 


Don't forget...this Wednesday is Valentines Day! I hope everyone has a sweet Valentines Day! 💕
My niece called me to tell me that she is making a Valentine Box with bluebirds on it! Olivia is in the 4th grade and their school mascot is the bluebird! I couldn't imagine how she was going to pull this off...but she never ceases to amaze me! She sent me a picture and my mind was blown! They even made the pom poms they used for the tree and bluebirds! She is super creative! This is just incredible! 






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2018 Pyeong Change Winter Olympics

Don't forget to tune in to the Winter games! 
I love to watch the Olympics! My favorite is figure skating and snow boarding! 


Friday, January 12, 2018

Snow Day in Memphis

This morning, Memphis woke up to freezing rain and by mid-morning it was snowing.  The sleet was dreary but the snow was beautiful!  I always like at least one good snow day every year.  My favorite snow days are when you wake up to a blanket of snow. 

When I woke up this morning, there was freezing rain and I thought "I can make it to work".... but, after I got ready, made my coffee, and went out to my car.....it was a block of ice! I defrosted and headed out but didn't make it far before my tires started spinning on the ice! I thought...."I'm not getting out in this mess!"  The news said it was going to continue for several hours and then start snowing. Yep, that sounds like a traffic mess to me!

By this time, it started getting light outside and I heard the chirping! I went outside to make sure all the feeders were full and then the feeding frenzy began!  There were birds everywhere! I think my yard is like a "Cracker Barrel" for birds! I grabbed my camera and started snapping pictures. I'll just share a few. The brightness of the snow makes their feather seem more brilliant. I just love "snow bird" pics!








Sunday, January 7, 2018

It's a New Year!


Happy 2018 everyone! Sorry I've been absent the last part of 2017. There was so much going on...I started a new job, a kid off to college, my dad recovering from surgery, and of course...the holidays! I am so very thankful for the people in my life! I love my family & friends! I will admit that I have neglected my birds a little...but, it's a new year and my favorite time of year...I love the winter birds!  Their food sources are limited in the frigid temperatures so they rely more on us during the winter months. It's important to keep your feeders clean and full! Which is the topic of my first post of the year! 






I purchased this Lantern feeder at Lowes.
Highly recommend for attracting smaller birds
Speaking of feeders...I've added this new lantern feeder to my patio area and I love it! It's so easy to fill! The top lifts by sliding up which makes for easy filling and slides back down! It's so decorative and functional! I have noticed that mostly the smaller birds like it the best. Mostly, the finches and chickadees.  I think the edges may be too small for Cardinals.  It seems to be a tight squeeze from where they perch and where the food dispenses. I do like that it keeps the seed dry. By adding this to my yard, maybe the smaller birds will use this feeder and let the cardinals use the platform feeder. I always prefer to get feeders that are easy to fill and easy to clean! Simply clean your feeders using soap and water. Don't use any cleaners that will be harmful to the birds.




Speaking of seed...I've made a switch from my favorite Deluxe blend made by the National Audubon Society to their Signature Harvest Cherry blend.  So far, the birds are liking it. I just wanted to give them a change from what I've usually put out for them.  I intend on going back to the deluxe blend after this bag but I thought I would see if this new blend would attract any different types birds to my yard.  



If you're not familiar with my favorite blend, it's the Deluxe blend made by the National Audubon Society.  You might wonder what is so special about the National Audubon Society's blend or maybe you think I'm just paying for the name.  But, I can assure you it's worth it to pay a little more for this bird seed!  There are a lot less filler seeds that a lot of companies put in their blends. The birds just chunk this filler seed out of the feeders and onto the ground making a mess. I purchased a bag of the "Garden Treasures" brand one time and I won't buy that again! It sat in my feeders for quite some time....the birds did not like it! I went back to the Audubon Society and the birds couldn't get enough!

Speaking of water, it's always good to provide a water source in your yard. I have a bird bath but it's frozen right now. I'm adding a heated bird bath to my 'Ta-Da List'! 


Today, I caught a male American Goldfinch fledgling at my feeder.  The males are a brilliant yellow and shiny black in the summer months but in the winter months they molt. Molt is the process of feather replacement. In the spring they will transform into a bright yellow plumage. The new harvest cherry seed blend does include the Nyger seed which attracts gold finches.  I don't think the deluxe blend has nyger seed. I was quite excited to see the golf finch today!







I'm looking forward to 2018!
I have a lot planned for this year including some giveaways!

Get your yards and feeders ready!

Be sure to share your stories 
share my blog!

Don't forget.....
"There's nothing sweeter than a feeder!"

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