This past week it was really warm out and the orioles were really interested in taking a bath in my bird bath.
Odds and ends photographs from the farm.
The last of the spring birds have returned to the farm.
Two weeks ago a Rose-breasted Grosbeak turned up at the farm.
This past week my wife saw a Ruby-throated Hummingbird and a Baltimore Oriole. So far there appear to be only a couple of birds.
Tree Swallows have also returned are are checking out the housing situation. This year I added more bird houses so I hope there will not be fights between the Bluebirds and the swallows.
It was almost as if the summer birds could read the calendar. On September 1st I noticed that a large number of the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds disappeared from my feeders. There are still some around but I was feeding them once per day and now it is down to twice per week with fewer feeders out. The ones that are around are probably passing through from up north.
At about the same time I noticed that there were fewer Baltimore Orioles at my feeders. They also seem to be leaving. In the spring when these two species arrive the typically arrive within a day or two of each other. The same appears to be true when they leave. This is one of the last to leave.
Some time ago I received an e-mail with “Your Grateful Dead Photo” as the subject line. Since I don’t have any photo of the Grateful Dead I could only assume it was a scam so I didn’t bother to open the e-mail. I received several other e-mails with the same subject line over the next couple of weeks and ignored them as well.
Several weeks later I received a message on my blog from Rhino Entertainment Company Inquiring about the use of one of my photos on the cover on a boxed set of Grateful Dead Songs entitled “Grateful Dead: Spring 1990: The Other One”
As it turned out they wanted a license to use a line drawing of this photo as part of the artwork for one of the CD covers. It wasn’t one of my better photos but it fit their needs.
The artwork for the CD cover featured a Baltimore Oriole in the upper right corner.
This fledgling House Sparrow had just finished taking a bath.
A female Orchard Oriole looked a little lonely at my bird feeder.
Nap time for a fledgling House Sparrow.
A Grey Catbird heading for the nest with lunch.
An Eastern Bluebird caught after taking a bath.
A Baltimore Oriole waiting for its turn at the feeder.
Every spring when the Baltimore Orioles return I start feeding them grape jelly. After a couple of weeks they leave to raise their young. Sometimes a few of them will turn up at the jelly feeder during this time but for the most part I don’t see them again until the young fledge.
Once the young fledge, the adults and the young return to the jelly feeder. This has been the pattern for the past several years. This year when they returned there were a large number of them. What differed from past years was that they were frantic. It made me nervous just being around them. Then they started banging into my picture windows. At one point they were hitting the windows five or six times an hour. A couple of them were killed. This had never happened before.
I finally decided that they would be better off if I quit feeding them. I put some food out and when it was gone I did not put any more jelly out. After about a week and a half they were gone from my feeders.
I then decided to try again so I put a single jelly feeder out. This time only a few of them returned and all was calm. Since then I have had a steady stream of orioles at my feeder but the frantic chaos was no longer present.
I have a number of birds at my feeders. They Grey Catbirds have been around and are raising their young in a pine tree near the feeders. They have been battling the Blue Jays most of the summer. Apparently the jays go after the eggs and young of other birds.
The goldfinches have been absent for much of the spring. I have no idea why but they have returned recently to feed on the thistle seeds.
The Rose-breasted Grosbeaks have been around most of the summer and have recently returned to the feeders with their young.
The Baltimore Orioles were absent while they were raising their young. They have recently returned to the feeders in large numbers with their young.
I have a few Chipping Sparrows around the feeders from time to time.