This is getting to be a great bird time. Sharon has a group of feeders and birdbath set up just outside the screened porch, and we are really enjoying watching the activity. Late yesterday afternoon we saw 3 bluebirds arrive and take baths. Also saw a wren, surprisingly the first since I have been here. At the feeder we regularly see cardinals, house finches, chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, mockingbirds, mourning doves, and a pair of hummingbirds. Since we are in the country, we spot lots of turkey vultures drifting overhead – they always look like they are enjoying flying and coasting. We have pileated, hairy, and red-bellied woodpeckers keeping an eye on the trees. Lots of blue jays, crows, and even some phoebes, all near the house, but not at the feeders. Disappointingly no goldfinches have shown yet, we are waiting. There were many at Sharon’s previous house, and they over-winter around here. I have to learn all new habits of birds since moving farther south, but mostly I do know the eastern birds. Heard an unusual and unknown bird call this morning, so I’m looking out for a new one.

Birdfeeding station


The dogs really enjoy the squirrels and chipmunks who inhabit the yard – ‘vermin’ to be chased or stalked.

Even the cats are enjoying watching the birds and chipmunks from the bedroom windows on the opposite side of the house from the feeders – plenty of activity in the early morning and evening.

The one abundant population I am not thrilled to find are fire ants. They have not arrived as far north as I have been living, but there are mounds all over this yard. They really do burn/sting when they bite. I now spray my sneakers with insect repellent before walking in the grass, and try hard to remember to change out of sandals. We are treating to get rid of them in garden or near houses.


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