Ketchup and Mayo, hangin’. They’re so mild. I think it was from being raised by a Silkie hen. They won’t leave Silkieland, even though they can. They come and go from inside to out, visiting the roosters on the outside, but always back in at night.There was a hummingbird trapped in the greenhouse, zooming back and forth, stopping to refill at tomato flowers. I thought it best to not interfere and hope he got out. The dragonflies and bees don’t have any trouble this year, now that I have “screen doors” of orange snow fence.
Every day a vireo comes and goes through the door; I don’t even know what he’s shopping for. And the chicken feed supports not only chipmunks and bunnies, but also a red winged blackbird or two and a pair of mourning doves.
I saw another sparrow smash into my protectively screened windows, too. That’s two that I’ve seen, so who knows how many near misses there’ve been. He was bounced back and sat on the clothesline to regroup, looking back at the windows like WTH? There’s some kind of force field!The tweens on an adventure. They’re getting used to coming to the house, although something spooks them at times and they sprint away to familiar territory squawking. I can’t figure out what’s getting them like that – a rabbit or a bee? One of the tweens was in the woods today practicing crowing. He needs to keep practicing. And his attempt at privacy was a failure. The other roosters all fell silent, listening. Him: Glragh ga grleagggh! Other roosters: Wow. He’s got a ways to go. He really does. Crowing is not something you’re born able to do, if you’re a chicken, though perhaps the vocalizing urge is.
I lucked out with three colours of snapdragons germinating. I know, they’re not window box plants (although I don’t know how big they could/should get) but they were just tiny threads when I transplanted them and I didn’t have ambitious hopes for them.
I almost had a repeat performance of the great keet hunt last night. The sun’s going down earlier, it’s catching me out. I found Galahad tucked away (this time in blackberry brambles – smart) while there was still light, but it took some work to chase out the keets. Heeey, we were all tucked in. Once flushed, he took them all to the greenhouse, so crisis averted!
I tried something new to protect the birds from the windows. I used to have gift wrap ribbon dangling and fluttering – it works well, but not 100%. One or two birds still struck the windows every year, and that’s a sickening thump I could live with never hearing again.
So I raised my game. I stretched black nylon bird netting over our windows, on little posts to hold it away from the surface. I think there’s enough tension on it that even if a bird flies full speed and direct into the window, its momentum will be absorbed before it hits the glass, enough to save it from injury.
More likely the birds will see it readily and the spring rebound will not be tested.
I’m waiting for the chickadees to come stand on my posts to eat their seeds.It’s not a Better Homes and Gardens look. Not many things are around here. HW was not impressed. “What if I did something like that? Stuck pieces of wood and baling twine all over the house? I’d be in so much trouble!” I disagree.
From the inside, it looks like security glass. The mesh is subtle, but definitely visible. However, if it prevents wild bird death: totally worth it.
It’s cool that I can recognize individual birds returning to the feeder now. The Nuthatch is back, with an offspring and I strongly suspect that it is the Nuthatchling that we met in the summer! It took me a bit, but I remembered that last year the Nuthatch had a long and steep learning curve using the feeder. Man, she was bad at it! But this nuthatch came in like a pro and did some demonstrations, so definitely the same little bird. Watch and learn, youngster.
We just started staying in this place that has big beautiful windows, and lots of bird life. Unfortunately, there were a variety of bird bodies lying on the deck under the windows with two more casualties before the week was out.
In a hurry to try anything at all to end the carnage, I taped a few streamers of wrapping ribbon to the top of the windows.
So far, no more bird death!
This might be all it takes. It’s not terribly esthetic. The wind blows them all around and the curly nature of the ribbon can make them knot and tangle, but as long as it works -. I think the moving, waving ribbon, even when it’s blowing clear off the glass, creates enough sense of dimension to get the point across. This is not sky access!
In which, H.W. learns to weld, the camper gets its eyes back, and many sticks are thrown for the dog.
H.W. learned to weld real quick to install a system for the motorcycle to travel on the trailer.
His talented friend generously encouraged H.W. to visit and learn, and H.W. made some very nice welds welding on the arch that protects the egg, and that the bike ties off to, and some tiedown points.
This whole motorcycle mount project was a bit long and involved, as we were pretty much making up the design in the store based on what sizes of steel angle iron and flat stock they had.
I cut up the aluminum with a ‘cip saw and the pro did the more exacting aluminum welding to make the laddered channel. We bolted that onto the frame with U-bolts. In theory, that way it can be swapped out for a toolbox, etc, if the bike doesn’t need to be transported.
Yay! Windows are all done. In the nick of time, too. I finished the housewrap around the last in the dark as the snow was starting again.
The windows took considerably longer than I had expected (Oh, about a day’s work – famous last words). One was an opener, one was huge and double paned, and one needed the wall framed to fit it, so it was a sizable job, I was just in denial.
The opener is my biggest accomplishment. I’ve never built an opener before, and I was figuring out the hardware from scratch with no guidance (Google doesn’t always come through, fyi). But it was a total success, operating perfectly smoothly and closing tight.
Yay! It’s a major threshold to have the barn really sealed up. In the same days, HW built the two missing doors and hung them, so we are officially cozy now. It’s also much less embarrassing, to not be enclosed by double layers of poly (hey, I was busy last winter). Let the snow fly!