Sunday, May 28, 2006

Starting young

Young birder

This is Morgan, six years old, adorable, smart as a whip and a budding birder...

Young birder

Thursday, May 25, 2006

A little more about Monkey

Although I set Monkey free on Tuesday, he still comes back to sleep in our screen room at night. Well, he doesn't exactly come back - at sunset I go squirrel hunting (the kind without a weapon), find him, offer him my arm and he willingly climbs aboard my body. Tuesday evening he was absolutely exhausted after his first day of tree climbing. He climbed inside my sweatshirt and promptly fell asleep. I took him into the screen room offered him some formula (which he didn't want) and a walnut (which he ate). Then he drank lots of water and went back to sleep. This photo shows him curled on my hand sound asleep. Normally he would fight me when I would try to put him into his cage at night, but that night he never even woke up as I moved him into his "nest" (a cardboard box filled with fleece cloth and leaves).

squirrel in hand

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

He's come a long way!

Today was the big day for Monkey - his venture out to the great big world that until today he's only viewed from our screen room. He did great - I'm so proud of my little boy... climbing trees and performing death defying stunts 40 feet off the ground and making friends his first day out! I spent hours watching him and today I'm having some wierd back pain, that I'm quite sure is related to the hours I spent looking up.

Here's a photo taken the day that he was brought to me (Easter Sunday):

baby squirrel

Here's Monkey sunbathing on our screen porch (his home until today) just before I opened the door to let him outside:

squirrel in the sun

Here he is just after I released him - he came to life!

squirrel rehabilitation

Pup1 doesn't miss Monkey at all - she finally has her sunny screen room back...


Sunday, May 21, 2006

"Doing the bluebirds"

"Doing the bluebirds" is our evolving evening ritual - it involves about 30 mealworms in a tuna can, a pair of binoculars, usually a camera and tonight we added a couple of glasses of wine (for us, not the bluebirds).


The bluebirds are nesting near the lake, and I deliver the mealworms to their doorstep (almost). The first day I placed a clear glass bowl of mealworms on the ground just 10 feet from their nest box. The next day the mealworms were still there. How could these birds who seem to spot a moth from 50 feet miss a whole bowl of delicious worms right outside their door???? I decided that the clear glass bowl must not be conspicious enough, so the next day I put the worms in a large white plastic bowl. A little too conspicious this time - it drew a flock of crows right to the bluebird house. Day three, new tactic, I put the mealworms in a tuna can and watched from our dock to make sure the crows didn't cause trouble. That day it took about an hour for the bluebirds to notice their little feast. But they are a quick study - the next day it took them about one minute to start munching and now they show up within seconds of delivery.

bluebirds eating mealworms

bluebird feeding babies

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Following the sun

chihuahua in sun

Before we bought Pup1 eight years ago, I read a book which mentioned that chihuahuas tend to seek out sunny spots for their nap locations, even if the spot of sun is only the size of a half dollar. Our dining/family room has lots of windows and sky lights, so on a sunny day they can find some sunshine somewhere. But the sunny spots keep moving. When the sun moves off their pillow, they hop up and stand in the new sunny spot and stare at me until I move the pillow for them. Sometimes a little bark is necessary to get my attention. I am their pillow-moving slave. If they would practice some team work, I'm sure they could drag the pillow around without my help.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

My first orchid

I bought this orchid at a local flea market. It's my first, but hopefully not my last. I've had it a few weeks and so far it still looks beautiful. I'm a nurturer, but I normally have much more success with animals than plants. Hoping for the best with this beauty...


Friday, May 12, 2006

Not in the top ten

I didn't look at all of the lists, but my guess is that this guy wasn't listed on anyone's list for the ten most beautiful birds

black vulture

Monday, May 08, 2006


Last Thursday we took our first boat ride of the season. This photo shows a view of Lake Gaston reflected in my husband's sunglasses.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Friday, May 05, 2006


I found this catfish skeleton on the roof of our neighbor's dock.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Mallard yoga

Well, I suppose I could get up ...

If you're going to toss food into the lake

Carolina wren

Carolina wren

We found this guy in our garage. Notice the cobwebs above his eye - with all the webs in our garage, he's lucky he wasn't trapped forever!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Lulu's leg

orange head purple breast female gouldian finch

One day last week I noticed that Lulu spent a lot of time sunning herself on the windowsill of the aviary. She didn't appear to be sick - she wasn't puffed up, nor did she have her head tucked under her wing. I tapped on the window and she flew up to one of the food dishes with no problem. It wasn't until the next day that I noticed her right leg was broken, hanging on only by skin. We caught her and snipped off the dangling leg. It appeared that there was nothing else to be done - her remaining stump looked like it had already healed with no hint of infection. The photo below shows what's left of her right leg.

orange head purple breast gouldian hen

She seems to be doing fine. Animals are just amazing. I've even seen her go into one of the nest boxes. Not sure how she'll do with the mating thing, but you never know!