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Posts Tagged ‘Birds’

bird-on-hay

Is this a setting sun

or a rising moon?

Or is it a bird on a hay bale at dusk?

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Vacancy - Birds Only

Vacancy – Birds Only

Bird Hotel  Needs Restoration.

Rooms Available for Consideration.

Not Listed in Trivago but

Call for Reservation.

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The Virginia State Bird is the Cardinal

And here he is on my deck railing,

adding color before the onset of Spring!

VAState Bird

 

The northern cardinal is so well loved that it has been named the official bird of no fewer than seven U.S. states. Bright red cardinals are easily identified by even casual bird watchers, and are often seen frequenting backyards and bird feeders. When foraging elsewhere the birds eat insects, seeds, grain, fruit, and sap.Cardinals, also called “redbirds,” do not migrate and have traditionally been more common in warmer climes such as the U.S. southeast. However, in recent decades they have expanded their common range north through the United States and even into Canada. This population growth may be due to an increase in winter bird feeders and to the bird’s ability to adapt to parks and suburban human habitats.

Only males sport the brilliant red plumage for which their species is known. The color is a key to mating success—the brighter the better. Females are an attractive tan/gray.

Cardinals are active songbirds and sing a variety of different melodies. Males can be aggressive when defending their territory, and they frequently attack other males who intrude. This tendency sometimes leads cardinals to fly into glass windows, when they charge an “intruding bird” that is really their own reflection. Cardinals are fairly social and join in flocks that may even include birds of other species. During mating season, however, groups dissolve into pairs. Male birds feed their monogamous partners as they incubate clutches of eggs—typically three per season.

From: National Geographic

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Goose Convention

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Happy Valentine’s Day from Virginia!

Love Birds

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Winterscape 1It was a big snow and if the changed landscape wasn’t enough to remind me that it’s winter, well the bluejays and the little hungry birds at the feeder let me know in “no uncertain terms.”

Snow on the Blueridge 1

Things are melting now, but there is still enough snow to make me marvel at an ordinary view that is still transformed with shadows punctuated by the rays of an emerging sun.

Bluejay Eyeview Best

How beautiful winter can be.

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Winter's Fingerprint January 2016

Looks like we got about 18 inches of snow in my part of Virginia during the first big snow storm in 2016!

I am grateful that we did not lose power.

I tried to help clear the deck but my toes got wet and cold in the big boot for the Big Foot. The boot is more of a summer variety with open toes vulnerable to snowflakes (even when protected by a sock).

I did finally clear a path to the bird feeder though since the little sweethearts were in a frenzy for food.

20160123_091058

Special appreciation to our friend, neighbor, and President of our neighborhood, Pete Holladay, who never fails to clear these back-country lanes during almost any snowstorm.  He came out twice this time to assure we can all get out if there is an emergency.   Thank you Pete!

And finally, “Ain’t snow grand?”

Being Florida born and bred, I still love the feeling of living in a magical white world!

 

 

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Watchin the Girls Go By

It was a rainy day the day before we left for a European river cruise called The Highlights of Germany.  I was packed, ready, and gazing out the window when four boy turkeys sitting on the fence began spreading their wings in a show for a bevy of delicate females.

They evidently did not make much of an impression because the girls just walked on by.

Ah well!  I could almost hear the guys sigh as they watched opportunity passing.

But then dinner called and they were happily distracted.

And that reminded me of a song called Standing on the Corner (watchin’ all the girls go by).  I loved the Dean Martin rendition.

From en.wikipedia.org:
“Standing on the Corner is a popular song written by Frank Loesser and published in 1956.  It was introduced by Shorty Long, Alan Gilbert, John Henson, and Roy Lazarus in the Broadway musical, The Most Happy Fella.  

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Which Way to Venezuela

Now is the time of year when our fascinating “hummers” start to overeat because Hummingbirds need to fuel up for a long grueling journey to Venezuela.

I heard that on the radio once – the thing about Venezuela being their ultimate destination.

And I tend to believe everything I hear.

This little traveller resting on top of my umbrella has doubts though.

He evidently doesn’t believe what he heard about directions to Venezuela.

He keeps landing and looking north and then looking south.

Meanwhile, six more of his family ignore him and are busy swooping and arguing in a deafening buzz.

They are making a big fuss with all that fighting, and wasting energy over who gets “first dibs”/dips at the feeder.

Ah, I know it will not be long now when they will all take off for Venezuela.

Bon Voyage my little friends!  Fare thee well!

And please –

Listen to the radio next Spring and find your way back to Virginia!

 

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Pond Fountain 2

You bird lovers out there probably already knew the answer to the question in yesterday’s post about  Ridgely Historic Gardens. 

That ghostly hanging thing was a clump of sheep’s wool!Wool for Birds'NestsBest

Songbirds love this well-insulating, all-weather fiber that’s ideal for their nests and there for the pickin’!

Ridgely Gardens is a historic two-acre mountainside property overlooking the town of Clifton Forge in the Alleghany Highlands of Virginia.  This week my friend, Norma, and I had a private tour with Donald Roberts, the current owner and gardener!

View from gardenThe Roberts believe gardens are to be shared and welcome visitors, including groups, garden clubs, and folks like Norma and me, who are just curious.

These beautiful gardens were first started in 1902, professionally landscaped in 1932, and now the original detailed plans and blueprints are on display.Aerial of upper pond--2012

Donald Roberts Owner

Donald Roberts – Ridgely Historic Gardens

Mr. Roberts cleared, managed, maintained and stuck closely to the original plans and plantings which included a boxwood maze, a large variety of heirloom plants and extensive Depression era stonework.  Fishponds, fountains, a stone pagoda, a greenhouse, a sunken stone hothouse, and a gardener’s cabin are other features of this remarkable place.

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