I am an animal lover of all types, I have been enjoying my backyard sanctuary for years and enjoy sharing my stories with family and friends. I am attempting to share with anyone who may enjoy a peek at a variety of animals that stop by for food and water. Some have been coming very frequent including my pair of Pileated Woodpeckers I call Momma and Woody. I hope to share my enthusiasm with others in an attempt to save whats left of our wildlife habitat and what we can do in our own yards to help them and enjoy what they each have to offer.
Good Morning, I have written before about my silly daily routine with my outdoor nature buddies, and recently I have been battling the Hawks. So each morning now I will sit out back since Coop is now hiding here. I’m learning the calls the animals are making to indicate to each other just what predator is coming. As I sat there quietly behind a bamboo fence I use to stop the fly and grabs the Stellar Jays began to squawk along with the Crows. But the grey squirrel crept up the tree branch above me and made a sound I havent heard before. I thought aha! that hawk must be right on the other side, so I quietly get up to peek over the fence (sense my only method of distraction right now is to scare him off) and Surprise..Wiley Coyote was right there and lucky for me it took him a second to figure out the head that just appeared was me. I scared him good !!! I have to, it is just to close to my back yard and I have little dogs so I have to set boundaries. Sadly again the forest around us is going down at alarming rates and our nature animals are having a serious homeless issue !!!!Where do we expect them to go ??
So far Woody and Momma are unable to return, I can hear them calling out there so I know they are still around, I am guessing its to risky right now and will return when coverage is better. But also it could be that thier homes are gone, I am seeing such old growth logs heading to mills that it’s probably gotten to them too.
I have Northern Flying Squirrels 🙂 they are nocturnal and now that my cameras are up I caught activity that I thought was a rat but nope its a flying squirrel and they are super small and cute. Big eyes and they look hilarious on nightcam. I named him Zippy of course and he is a lot like a douglas squirrel, how he sits and holds his food and then zoom he is in the tree. So fun to see.
The red-winged Blackbird has returned also, its kinda early to have all these spring sounds and I am beginning to prepare for an early spring..
I am beginning to think that Sneaky Pete (our Cooper’s hawk) is making a game out of eating all of my buddies. I caught him sneaking beside the shed just waiting for Tippy the Douglas squirrel to come in and get one of his peanuts, in a flash he almost tagged him off the log ahhh then the little guys looks at me like Do something ! HaHa He doesn’t care if I’m even standing there anymore and he is succeeding in cleaning out my forest. But the other animals are still working together to come up with ways of notifying each other and me when he sneaking around. I have stopped feeding only to find them sitting in the trees waiting and realizing they have nowhere else to go so I become very creative in getting them food and cover.
I still have a large group of Bushtit and they are so small and cute so I am putting out the suet in hard to reach locations. I have Red wing blackbird’s now, which have figured a way to land on the suet log for Woody and like to eat it along with the stellar jays, black-capped chickadee’s and many more. Our temperatures are staying above normal so the buds on the trees are blooming and believe it or not Freddy the frog is starting to croak goodness it’s only January!
Woody and Momma are close but they can not come in right now until this Hawk is gone. Once the leaves return they will have a much better ability to come in. My need to keep a barrier along the fence line has caused some easy access during the winter, along with the deer which I can see come in at night and sit by the back shed and that have helped clear the overgrowth .
More of the forest is gone and I have a view of the mountain now, it is pretty but if you could see the amount of forest that’s now gone in just 6 months it’s heartbreaking. They just looked 70 acres behind us in the middle of homes and it’s a gigantic wrecking yard 😳 yep tore down a forest and filled it with wrecked cars full of oil gas and all things non environmental. I’m pretty sure there were other areas where so much wasn’t lost for the greed of just a few but that would have required a conscience and the ability to think beyond ones self and that is not happening anymore. So I will stay here and do my best to save this small corner of nature and hope that others around the world will too.
Sadly I am reporting that our home and sanctuary has had a theft, and it was a human animal that has disturbed my private domain. We were so angry, he stole a bicycle and our super sleuthing found he came around thru the forest. Grrrrrrr So the camara’s are now set for security and will have more for the animals later. Nothing makes you madder then knowing just how far in a stranger had made it, well good luck doing it again because were ready this time. !!!!
Meanwhile Cooper the hawk and Red are spending too much time picking off the animals, it is feeding time for the babies and our warm weather is causing even more to start to nest. But they have found a gold mine in this part of the forest so I have to keep the food away a bit longer. What is interesting is how the other animals are adapting to the increase in predators, The Stellar Jays are known for mimicking and I can now tell that they use that to indicate what predators is hiding in the bushes. I have heard the hawk, the Coopers , Bald Eagle and my favorite is the strange call they make when its a ground predator like a cat or coyote etc.
Woody and Mamma and our late Juvenile have been pushed back a bit but I do hear them out there and Woody came in yesterday, but its only for a quick bite. Cooper landed right in front of me no worries at all.
I had a flock of Bushtit along with Evening Grosbeak again which is very strange. They usually do not show up until March so lets how this goes. Even Freddie the frog starting croaking yesterday. I’m so curious to see if spring activity is really starting already and what new visitors we’ll get this year. More soon. 🙂
What a month it has been. Sneaky Pete alias Coopers Hawk along with Big Red the Red Tail Hawk my little buddies are getting picked off left and right. What a bad time to stop feeding, it as frozen or flooding! But that darn Cooper has my number, he even landed right at my door grrrrrr I swear that bird knows haha. I have interrupted several of his attempts and kills in the hopes he will just eat elsewhere but I’m beginning to think he loves a challenge!
This increase in raptors is making it hard for Momma and Woody Pileated to come in. Now they come down and call from our porch so I can stand out there while they eat, that’s when I noticed I had 3 visitors and one is a juvenile female. Wow, this means because of hot summer and late fall arrival a lot of my birds had second batches of babies. I first noticed last week when my Downy and Hairy woodpeckers each had babies they were feeding, then yesterday I had a flock of Evening Grosbeak well that was a huge surprise, then looking closely I see they too have juveniles. That’s the picture from above, they are beautiful but the young have no color, they are grey and black super cool but odd that they are even here.
Also I’ve added a raw video of a visit with Momma Pileated ☺️ you will see Chester the chestnut backed chickadee, my Grey squirrel that’s addicted to suet 😂 and you will hear how Woody talked to Momma while she’s here. In the tree you’ll see a Flicker woodpecker and where Woody lands. And busters visit to the peanut hutch.
Its cold out and Hummer is still refusing to share……I use Christmas lights to help keep the food from freezing and he is hogging all three !!!! I even took down one so the little female could have a chance to eat and that did not go over well with him haha little stinker hovers at my face giving me a what for !! He has to keep flying around in order to guard all three since I have them placed to share. good grief 🙂
Buster is not sharing either, those little douglas squirrels are funny, I put the peanuts in to holders and today while “Tippy” was already inside, the one I call double T jumped in and the fight was on. I had to go and let the poor guy out. I am beginning to see my little nature buddies do not like to share.
It was a big night for Wiley Coyote seems him and his pack had a party in the back yard last night, tracks are everywhere but I am not sure what they got. This pack is getting big and they are so limited on their territory but that’s really close. They are showing reports nearby of activity in neighborhoods and a little girl was bitten while on the porch hanging christmas lights and its only going to continue. But the building and wiping out small pieces of forests just continues. I seriously think we can do much better than this.
waiting for the sun to burn off this fog…………………………
Wow, it’s getting very tough for Woody and Momma to come down. That Coopers Hawk aka Sneaky Pete is really really sneaky !!!!! I have caught him sneaking low in the tree right at the break of dawn, I limit feeding and have moved times but he is very patient hunter, grrrrr. This weekend was again so wet that good pictures were hard to come by, Buster and family seem to be a target of Cooper also so I am getting frustrated, I know its part of the circle of life but he can eat elsewhere.
Lets not forget yesterday, while I was snooping on Cooper we got a visit again from Wiley coyote, ugh He is so pretty but I scared him good this time haha, he didn’t see me so it felt great . Still it happens in mid day so I still have to always be outside with the dogs for potty breaks.
Rocky Racoon and company also came in for apparently a nice dip in the pond, not just one but both ponds were tested, Rocky even climbed up onto the waterfall and proceeded to just roll with it. I can’t believe the whole thing didn’t fall.
Hummer……just wont share! I have 3 feeders out and hummer is my resident Anna’s hummingbird, H2 showed up last year, one stays on the left tree and one on the right. They each have a mate but spend the whole day chasing each other off the feeders, quite a site and when you go outside you get what we call “buzzed” as they fly by, thank goodness we wear glasses because its gonna hurt if they hit us.
Cold and Fog weather now so keeping the suet and hummingbird food out is important. Remember, if you had fires, floods, etc. in your area this past summer the food supplies for nature animals was also destroyed, so any help we can give will make a difference.
What a weekend, yuk! High winds and a lot of rain!!! I did have another visit from my new buddy the Great Blue Heron, its funny, he is very interested in the statue I have at the pond. He seems concerned the bird hasn’t moved in months lol.
Momma and Woody have returned also, it is a surprise to me that they must have had a late baby because she came in quite clumsy. Momma and daddy came down to eat with her. It is spectacular to see her come almost to me on the porch and this time poof, she takes a bath in our small water pond. It was cool, she actually swam !!!!! The wind was howling out so when she came out onto the post she dried pretty quick, but it was long enough to get an education on some of the habits they have. I am still amazed that they are comfortable enough to take a bath in front of me as they are super vulnerable at that time. What an honor!! I have read so much on these birds but I firmly believe that animals react to those who are studying them and if you are lucky they will want to study you too.
My concern for lack of forest space for our animals is growing rapidly, I have been watching what is left of our trees and property evaporate so fast that we have pushed these animals into suburbs where people refuse to exist with them and I think the problem is getting worse where I am at an alarming rate. So provided shelter, food, water and habitat for our nature buddies is essential and any of us that can provide these things will make a difference.
I have put together my own foods and I am currently working on a way to package and offer it for you all to try so stay tuned for that.
Have a wonderful day, we have another set of storms coming up so time to prepare……..