A Suet Lesson

Today was the day that the immature Nuthatches and one immature female Hairy Woodpecker chose to learn about the “upside down” suet feeder. I absolutely love “my” little family of White-breasted Nuthatches. The young look like little balls of fluff and are learning how to do everything. They’ve been making many trips to the sunflower feeders, grabbing a seed and taking it back to the Crab Apple Tree. It seems like 90% of the seeds end up on the ground, but every now and then they get it right!  I actually want to clap my hands when they do!  They’ve been watching Mom and following her to the suet feeder, but just couldn’t get the hang of grabbing the side and walking to the bottom upside down. Today was their big day, though. They conquered it!!

The Woodpeckers, both Downy and Hairy, have been very quiet while they’ve been raising their little one”s. Today, though, they came to the feeders where Mom helped them with the seeds.  One female Hairy decided to try out the suet feeder on her own. She warily crept down the porch post, looked at the feeder, stood on top of it, and flew off. She did this many times before she got the idea.  The whole time, a Mourning Dove stood quietly by on a wire and watched the whole process.  She cooed every now and then as if she were their cheering section 🙂 .


                                                                           I think this is how you do it!


                              OK, this is kind of scary, but I think I remember Mom doing this.


          I DID IT! I DID IT! Now how do I fly away when I’m hanging upside down?


                               Oh, boy, oh, boy, I’m going to try something new.


                       Yikes! This is really scary. How am I supposed to do this?


                           Whew, here I am – let me catch my breath for a minute.


            I got it!! Success! This is really good stuff. I’ll be back and try it again!


                                         Well, it took awhile, but they did a good job!


A Froggy Kind of Weekend

Fourth of July came and went quite uneventfully which is how we like it.  As I was weeding my squash garden, I noticed some little tiny “frogs” that were the size of my pinky finger nail. I had seen them before, but wasn’t really sure what kind they were.  Upon further study on Sunday, I realized that they are not frogs at all, but baby American Toads!!  Just when I think I know so much about nature, I find that I don’t know anything at all.  It’s a continual learning process.  I think that’s why I love nature so much – it always keeps me thinking.  So, following are a small collection of the frogs and toad I have come across in my area.






The Lily Pad Shuttle!




Tree Frog


A Dragon Among Us!

The rain finally stopped for a day, so we (my husband and I) jumped in the car and went north a bit to visit our good friend.  He has  a little tiny pond on his property that attracts a variety of Dragonflies. I have been seriously depressed by our lack of dragons and damsels at our place this year, so was hoping to get my “fix” at our friends place.  I did in a way, but there was only one variety of Dragon and that was a female Common Green Darner.  I love the photos because they show her ovipositing (laying eggs) in vegetation that matches her colors identically!  If I hadn’t seen her land, I would have never realize she was even there.  In the picture that I will post, you can see her abdomen curled under her for the purpose of laying her eggs.  Also, you can just see the classic “bulls-eye” in the middle of her head that says she is a Common Green Darner.  In other news, our little Tree Swallows left the nest box today with their parents.  I will truly miss them.  Hopefully, they will be flying overhead for the rest of the summer.  Common Green Darner (female)(For best viewing, please click on photo to enlarge)

The Kids!

Well, the rain stopped enough this afternoon to let me get a couple of photos of my Tree Swallows (they look best if you click on them to see the full size).  The babies are getting SO big!  I imagine they will be leaving the nest very shortly.  I will miss them and all of their jabbering.  Mom and Dad have been very good parents. No matter what the weather, they are forever finding food for their little ones.  I don’t know where they found insects these last couple of days.  It was so cold that we resorted to running our pellet stove just to stay warm.  Hard to believe that it’s almost July!

IMG_7551 IMG_7505

A Rainy Weekend

Well, it has rained almost the whole weekend as we close in on 8″ of rain for the month.  Since it wasn’t a good picture taking time, I thought I would put up a photo that I took recently that is full of blue sky and a beautiful little Goldfinch.  He reminds me of sunshine!  We are lucky to have a lot of these little bits of “sunshine” flying around us all spring, summer and fall.  They sure do make me smile.IMG_0026

Why I Am Starting a Blog

I have a great passion for anything in the natural world.  It doesn’t matter if it’s flower or fauna, it will always be special to me.  At the ages of  62 and 65, my husband and I were finally able to purchase a small home in the country on 16 acres with a wildlife pond.  Yes, the house needs work as do the out buildings, but it really isn’t important to us at this stage of our lives. What is important is what we see out our windows everyday.  That is what I would like to share with all of you.  Weather permitting, my short entries will be accompanied by a photograph of what I saw on any given day.  I hope you will enjoy embarking on this adventure with me!