I had a couple extra days off last week after the holiday, in between jobs, which gave me more time to spend in the backyard. I think the wild birds were starting to get used to my presence, so it is with reluctance that I go back to being The Scary Human Who Fills The Feeders.
A female Ruby-Throated Hummingbird spent perhaps a week in the area, and she would generally show up just before sundown which made it difficult to take pictures of her. One morning early when I went out to fill the feeders I saw her sitting in the redbud tree so I suspect she came more often than I was aware. I did have a beautiful male show up one afternoon but he was gone by the time I got my camera.
The yard has a lot of yellow going on with several varieties of goldenrod which I planted, for the most part, last fall. There is also one almost terrifyingly humongous sunflower which is more like a tree than a plant. I think the reason why it is so huge and still going strong is because it’s very close to the compost heap. I may need an axe to cut it down but for the moment I still find it cheerful and entertaining as it spreads out onto the cement slab.
The goldfinches have been busy chowing down on seed heads. They are probably responsible for a lot of the echinacea taking over the back bed. But that’s the original reason why I started the wildflowers years ago anyway, to attract birds, so I’m happy my yard has now become a destination.
After years of trying to outsmart squirrels I have given up and they seem to be a bit less annoying as long as they get their daily peanuts.
House Sparrows never get much photographic attention from me, but they eat most of the birdseed and are such a presence I felt I should take a few pictures.
The two birds who capitalize most when the House Sparrows have left the yard are the Downy Woodpecker and the White-Breasted Nuthatch.
Above, two photos of a couple House Finches for the record. They were not in the best of light or feather.
Bees have been constant if not as numerous as previous years.
The Mourning Doves are usually very skittish and whenever I find a pile of feathers from one the local Cooper’s Hawk has made off with, I wonder how many are left.
Even after you click on the picture above, it may be difficult to see the spider web on the left. I saw the garden spider in the middle of it once, but it has proved to be camera-shy. The web spans the narrow sidewalk running along the south fence. I am not going to be the one to destroy it by walking through. On the right, a bee on a remaining purple coneflower.
As long as the squirrels can drink upside down hanging from a tree, they won’t knock over the birdbaths. If I wake up tomorrow to overturned bird baths the yard was likely visited by a nocturnal creature.
My first full week with my new employer starts tomorrow. The new job and choir commitments likely require me to tweak my schedule to figure out where and when I can fit the blog in. Fall migration also demands attention. Drum roll, please.
Your yard is positively a paradise, for birds and people! Lovely photo and collection here, Lisa. We get the wintering goldfinches here so rarely see the males in their brilliant yellow coats. Happy last few days of summer!
You have a good variety of birds visiting your backyard Lisa. Congratulations on your new job. We are now waiting for hurricane Irma now in Georgia (South). It’s projected to be in our area by Tuesday 2:00am. Right now we are getting rain and some wind. Great post! 🙂
You have enough going on in your yard to keep you going if you don’t have the chance to get out. They may be a bit of a pest but squirrels are great photographic subjects.
Thanks. Squirrels sometimes remind me of monkeys in other climates, the way they navigate the trees.
Thanks Lisa. I look forward to seeing a blog entry from you whenever you have the time. Thanks for all your posts–I really have learned a lot.
Thanks, MaryLee. I keep telling myself maybe the busier I am the more I will accomplish! 🙂
beautiful….. you live with nature…. so many birds in the backyard…. they are wonderful to watch……
Thanks for your lovely comment. I would rather be outside than indoors all the time. If only it were possible! 🙂
Love all the new backyard shots! Your squirrels have a different look than our grays here on the west coast…just as cute though. 🙂
Thanks so much! I have gray squirrels, actually they outnumber the fox variety, but I find the fox squirrels more photogenic. 🙂
Oh… I am not familiar with the fox squirrels. I will do my homework. Thanks Lisa! 🙂
Love the Goldfinch shots, and the hummingbird! You certainly seem to have done a superlative job of gardening for wildlife.
I’m blushing! I also am sure I’ve been inspired by you. Certainly all the planting I did last year is paying off. And it’s rewarding to see what has happened over the longer term with the trees that went in as little sticks 16 years ago and how unexpected visitors keep showing up. As an afterthought, I wish I could get a picture of the skunk when it visits, it’s so beautiful. 🙂
I enjoy your photos very much Lisa! And your comments too. Good Luck on the new job.
Thanks, Kathryn and welcome!