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  • A weed is no more than a flower in disguise.
  • My Home, My Garden.

    Photos of the Week

    April
    26
    2008

    ice stick tulip copyright leanne wildermuth' class=
    Ice Stick Tulip
    peach gerber gerbera daisy copyright leanne wildermuth' class=
    Peach Gerbera Daisy

    curious mourning dove copyright leanne wildermuth' class=
    Curious Mourning Dove

    first red tulip bloom copyright leanne wildermuth' class=
    First Red Tulip Bloom

    mosquito blech yucky bug' class=
    (Shown for effect only. Photo quality sucks. So does the bug.)

     

    Migration ROCKS.

    April
    19
    2008

    I love migration. It’s nature’s way of confirming spring has arrived when you see flashes of color out of the corner of your eye and have this dude reeeeaching his little head waaaay over so he can have a peek at the lady with the camera:

    american goldfinch detail photograph leanne wildermuth' class=
    American Goldfinch, Male

    And this guy, who I see flitting around in his typical skittish way, never too sure of what to land on until he hits a finch sock – then you couldn’t pry him off if you wanted to:

    male house finch photography macro detail leanne wildermuth' class=
    House Finch, Male

    All of the other interesting birds will arrive soon and only be here for a week or so. Eastern Towhees, Grosbeaks, Creepers and Wrens will stop by, then my tried and true birds will stay here for the summer. This fella caught my ear while I was outside the other day:

    chipping sparrow perched and singing overlay photo leanne wildermuth' class=
    Chipping Sparrow, Male

    He was just singing away up in a tree, I did an overlay so you can see what he looks like singing, too.

    I thought you’d like this one, since I was talking about how to identify males and females and mentioned the female Red Bellied Woodpecker had been by – but I hadn’t snapped a photo of her yet. I managed to do that the other day. Of course her hubby is here quite a bit, so here’s a new pic of him with her in the corner so you can see how they differ in appearances side by side:

    red bellied woodpecker red head white head male female photograph leanne wildermuth' class=

    And last, but not least, a squirrel with no tail. I have no idea what happened to him, and honestly it makes me sad to think about it.

    squirrel no tail injured rat tail leanne wildermuth' class=

    It appears to be growing back, though, so I’ll be keeping an eye out for this guy (and yes, he’s a guy, he turned around and stood up and my eyes about popped out of my head), hopefully we’ll see some growth over the summer. I wonder how he communicates without his tail? Anyone know anything about squirrel behavior or communication to know how he might adapt to this injury?

    The Happy Couple

    April
    10
    2008

    house sparrow gendering male female' class=
    This is the happy couple that has decided to move into our birdhouse this year. I’m showing you this because I received a couple of interesting comments on Mr. Poofy Sparrow yesterday, and I thought you might find it interesting and useful to be able to identify male and female birdies. I know I am always a little annoyed when someone calls my pet (say, Dusty, for example) a “he”, because she is clearly a she, at least in my head. I like to know. I have to know. God forbid I have gender crises on behalf of my own critters or the birds I watch and enjoy!

    In birdwatching, there’s one rule of thumb with identifying the gender of a bird.

    The boys are always prettier.

    I know. Not fair. Girls do all the work, but the boys get the good looks.

    So in the photo above, the sparrow to the left has more striking markings and more vivid hues. He’s the boy. The girl is pretty too, in her own dull brown innocent way. Once you see two of them together, it’s very easy to identify their gender. We have couples who frequent our feeders – cardinals, house finches, goldfinches, red bellied woodpeckers, downy woodpeckers, sparrows, cowbirds and red winged blackbirds.

    We also have mourning doves but I still have a hard time determining who’s who unless one poofs up and starts chasing the other one around in circles, the dirty little bird.

    Poof!

    April
    9
    2008

    house sparrow photo hunkered down molting poof ball' class=

    Sometimes, I wanna do exactly what this little house sparrow is doing.

    Hunker down in a quiet place away from the wind and just go “poof”.

    You know what I’m sayin’?

    SO Good To See You!

    April
    5
    2008

    knockout rose bush' class=
    Knockout Rose Bush Baby Leaves

    I’m a happy gardener today, headed out with a brand new pair of Fiskars Pruners, a wheelbarrow full of grass seed and some fresh dirt. Gonna go get some dirt underneath my fingernails!

    What are you up to this weekend?

    Help the Honey Bees!

    April
    4
    2008

    help the honey bees
    I’ve joined the cause to help save the honey bees whose lives are in danger worldwide. Will you join, too? Visit helpthehoneybees.com

    Here are a few bee facts to get you started:

    1. Honey bees are responsible for pollinating one-third of all the foods we eat, including many of our favorite fruits, nuts and vegetables.

    2. Alarmingly, more than 25 percent of the Western honey bee population has disappeared over the last several winters, threatening our food supply and our way of life.

    3. Many of the honey bee deaths are being attributed to a mysterious threat called Colony Collapse Disorder, which causes bees to suddenly leave their hive and die. Unfortunately, not much is known about this new threat.

    4. Researchers are working to find a solution to Colony Collapse Disorder, but there are ways that we can all help the honey bees today. Learn more about bees and what you can do to help at helpthehoneybees.com.

    Go on and create your own cute little bee to share with friends! The website alone is beeeee-autiful!

    Occupied

    March
    25
    2008

    male house sparrow nesting birdhouse' class=

    Hubby hung a birdhouse early last spring, it sat empty all year. It was a little sad, as we had hoped *somebirdy* would want to live there. Not a chance. It is pretty close to the tree and feeder, and we thought that might be the reason.

    This year – it looks like we’ll have tenants! Chirp chirp! I’m excited, especially since I had a sad experience with some baby sparrows a couple of years back when we demolished our carport. (We found a nice lady who rescues wildlife and took the babies to her, last we heard a couple of them made it.)

    Both mom and dad have been getting things ready in there, so we helped them out a bit by adding some nesting material in a suet feeder for them.

    Meanwhile, I am also occupied. Of course. My schedule is jam packed and the spring weather and sunshine have gotten me back on my treadmill so my flabular thighs fit into my summer wardrobe. Speaking of which, I had better get movin’, shakin’ and jigglin’!

    Go, Blow.

    March
    21
    2008

    The perfect backdrop, Chickeymonkey’s Thumper jacket.
    What’s not to love about blowin’ bubbles?
    They’ll make you feel like a kid again.

    Next time you’re at the store, pick up some bubbles,
    and go blow.

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