Tuesday, September 20, 2011

No particular topic

A pretty farm just down from Rountop Mtn.
A gray mist descended on the mountain this morning, so my photos today are from the day before, when the sky was overcast but not yet raining. My mother, and grandmother, too, as I recall, called these days with layers of thick, gray clouds an “October sky.” Today is not yet October, but that month is getting close. The days are already starting to vacillate between warm and cool. It’s too early in the season for the temperature to stay cool, though that won’t be long away either. On Sunday I actually lit my fireplace for a few hours, more to chase out the damp than for the heat it provided.

As part of my preparations for cooler weather, I have set up my fall birdfeeders again. The feeding stations aren’t completed yet. I will tweak my placement and set up for at least another month before calling it done. Although I’d like to have feeders up year round, the seed molds faster than the birds eat it in summer. And the opossums are often pretty tough on them, too.

So far, neither the squirrels nor the raccoons have discovered the feeders. That won’t last, either. I’ve given up buying the “nice” birdfeeders. I’ve yet to have one last longer than a year. I did get one of those squirrel proof metal feeders a year or so ago. A raccoon simply up-dumped the entire thing. Squirrel-proof, it might have been, but it wasn’t raccoon-proof.

So far I’ve only had the usual suspects testing the seed. White-breasted nuthatch, a Carolina chickadee and assorted titmice have all visited. The local birds eventually get quite tame. Earlier today I had the patio door open so I can hear my visitors when they arrive. They always announce themselves. Though I sit just 7-8 feet away from the feeders, as long as I don’t move quickly, my presence doesn’t bother them much. I guess the idea of free food is greater than their natural caution. Of course, I just like to think they are willing to share their company with me. I know I sure enjoy theirs.

Cottages surround a muddy Silver Lake, near Lewisberry


Scott said...

Where I grew up, outside Cleveland, Ohio, there was a nature center famous for its "tame" winter birds. Calm visitors could hold a handful of sunflower seeds, and the birds had learned that they could take the seeds from the visitors' hands without danger.

Carolyn H said...

Scott: Sometimes my winter feeder birds will do that too, though for the most part I don't encourage it. I worry they will lose too much of their natural caution if I encourage them. Especially on an icy winter morning, or when I am late with the feed, they will often land in the scoop I use to fill the feeders.

Connecticut Blogger said...

Thanks for the reminder about putting up the bird feeder. I'm glad I didn't have it out with all this rain we've been having, or it likely would have been ruined.