Birds visiting my mother’s farm (in her own words):
Killdeer – stays the summer in the pasture Bobwhite – year round Scaled Quail – year round Great Horned Owl – year round, catches all the mice Long Eared Owl – year round, catches all the mice Snowy Owl – passes thru Red Tailed Hawk – year round, catches rabbits & ground squirrels & mice American Kestrel – year round Mourning Dove – year round Ringed Turtle Dove – year round Barn Swallow – stay thru summer, catches all insects Common Red Shafted Flicker – passes thru, eats ants Common Yellow Shafted Flicker – passes thru, eats ants Red Naped Sapsucker – passes thru Calliope Hummingbird – stays the summer American Gold Finch – passes thru Yellow-Rumped Warbler – passes thru Hermit Warbler – passes thru Kingbird – stays the summer Meadow Lark – stays the summer Fly Catcher – stays all summer Scots Oriole – passing thru Rufus-Sided Towhee – spending the summer Black-headed Grosbeak – passing thru Robin – all year, takes all the worms out of my garden Hooded Oriole – passing thru Northern Bullock’s Oriole – passing thru Western Tanager – passing thru House Finch – all year Purple Finch – all year Some Wrens – passing thru Mocking Bird – all summer Red-winged Blackbird – passing thru All kinds of Sparrows – year round, a pest Starlings – year round, eat my chicken feed Common Grackle – all summer, eat all baby song birds Brewers Blackbird – all summer, eat the baby birds
Besides birds, I also have: Skunks, Badgers, Coyotes, Pronghorns, Swift Foxes, Cotton Tails and Jackrabbits – mainly in the pasture And Bull Snakes
Today, I could water my vegetable garden without the wind blowing 40 mph. I sat down with my beloved Saint Bernard dog beside me and watched all the birds. As soon as the water flows, the swallows are there. They pick up the wet soil with some straw and fly into my barn to build their nests. I have, at least, 15 pairs here. These fragile little birds have to be the most acrobatic flyers on the wing. It is also amazing to me, to understand how they can catch their meal in flight. Then there is the Robin, trying to pull all the worms out of my garden. I know they have to eat, but why the worms that I need for my garden soil? Oh, well!! …and then there is this pair of Mocking Birds. The male starts to sing by my bedroom window hours before the sun comes up and he does sing pretty. It is also fascinating to watch these Mocking Birds catch their meal on the ground. They open and close their wings while their tail whips up and down. I love to hear the cooing of the Mourning and Turtle Doves. All night long, I hear the Great Horned Owl hooting. The little Finches also sing pretty all day. It is amazing to watch all these little critters in my place, considering that I live in the prairie. Some folks call us Flatlanders, but I did plant hundreds of Rocky Mt. Junipers, some Pinon Pines, Aspen, Lilacs, Roses, lots of different types of shrubs, berry bushes, etc. No wonder everyone feels here at home.
Question: Have you noticed how many birds you have around your place?
I am my mother's daughter. She taught me how to knit, ride a horse, love and enjoy the unique characteristics of all living things, shoot a .22 rifle, drive a car, cook, be kind to people (if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all), sing, and country dance.
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I knit every day.
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