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Sunday 19 December 2021

At the feeder and an update

The weather has kept us in the house more than usual in the last month or more. Time on the treadmill and the stationary bike have had to suffice for exercise. Meanwhile the bird feeder on the patio has provided some entertainment. When we don’t go to see our feathered friends, they come to us.

The European starlings love suet in the feeder. 

They ignore sunflower seeds and peanuts preferring suet. Does their anatomy prevent them from cracking the shells? Once a starling finds suet you can bet his friends will show up too. Suet cakes don’t last long.

Blue Jays and starlings co-exist nicely when it comes to the feeder.

The jays go for the sunflower seeds though they prefer peanuts in the shell. The starlings and jays stay at opposite sides of the feeder as the starling eats the suet. 

                                                                The Jay’s tongue is visible.

The jay takes a seed to the rail

and with the seed between its feet, cracks and consumes the morsel inside. 

The crows don’t bother with the suet or the sunflower seeds. However, within an hour of having peanuts in the feeder, they drop by. They look to be afraid of their reflection in the glass partition in the feeder. 

They approach tentatively as they watch the reflection. The birds eventually approach the feeder and grab a peanut or two and take off to store or enjoy them elsewhere.

The crows line up for the peanuts and each bird in turn does the same routine with respect to the reflection in the glass.

One day, one of the neighbourhood Common flickers came to the feeder but we didn’t get a photo. It didn’t stay long but we were delighted to see it. 

A feeder can be a messy addition to a patio deck but the enjoyment we get from the birds it attracts far outweighs the work involved.

P. S. 

Prince Edward Island currently has the highest number of daily cases of Covid it’s had since the pandemic began. Yesterday, I double masked when I went to the store. My husband and I have yet to receive our booster shots since we aren’t six months past our second shots. We will be able to have our boosters in early January. Our oldest grandchildren get their first shots tomorrow.

We’ve had two days with our daughter and her family. She is working over Christmas so we had an early Christmas dinner one day and celebrated two family birthdays the next. We suspect Covid will affect our plans for New Year’s Eve and Day. In addition, parents have been advised that kids may be home schooled starting in January.

This pandemic is far from over.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

You got some great action shots! May you stay safe over the holidays!

Boud said...

Those are terrific shots. I find bluejays are a bit clumsy at the suet feeder, not really getting a perch. But they still manage.

The Padre said...

Dig The Photos - Hang In There - Sending Positive Vibes


Elephant's Child said...

Wonderful action shots.
Yes the feeders are messy, but ours keep us entertained all year round.
I hope you can avoid this latest iteration of the virus. Stay safe.

Bill said...

Super shots, Marie. You got lots of actions shots, very nice indeed. Stay safe!

Debbie said...

your images are really superb, and i agree about the mess, i could care less!!

COVID is far from over and some people are just not mature enough to get vaccinated and i don't understand it. my son is a pharmacist and has done much research, the vaccine is safe, it has proven itself safe!! our christmas plans have been cancelled. my nephews daughter was exposed at school so it is on to plan "b"!! my youngest son is on his way home now, driving 9 hours because he did not want to fly!!

our new cases are well over 6,000 per day here in new jersey and only 4 are omicron.

having christmas early may have worked in your favor marie!!

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

Fantastic shots of the birds in mid-air. Our starlings are equally fond of suet - and equally messy, I would guess. Every time we seem to be getting on top of this pandemic it seems to come up with a new trick.

Beside a babbling brook... said...

I don't remember your exact data.... I think that your Island was very well *vaccinated* but I may be wrong.

But if so, this goes to show, how 'the jab' is not an answer. As has been known, such people can still get *it*! One of our Grandsons was forced to get 'the jab,' to go back for his Senior Year at College. And he still got *it*.

I still feel, that _old_ people like my husband and I are, _should_ get 'the jab.' And those who are obese, or have other health issues. But young, healthy people, should simply get 'it' and get Natural Immunity.

My views only...!!!! Not pressing them on anyone else.

And!!! People at risk, should take all precautions, to keep themselves safe, of course. Just common sense.

We are not eating Christmas Dinner next door, because the "Grands" keep bringing, germs/viruses home. And it would not be Wise. They will bring plates of the Dinner over, though. We will share The Feast, but in our own home.

Just Common Sense...

Best Wishes to you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thank you for the update.

Happy Full Cold Moon!
πŸŽ„ πŸŒ• πŸŽ„
Happy Winter Solstice/Yule!
πŸŽ„ 🌞 πŸŽ„

DJan said...

I love your bird photos, and I too would be enchanted by them. When we moved here back in 2012, I decided not to hang feeders because they had become a real problem for my neighbors. Very messy. Plenty of my fellow residents feed them, and I can still enjoy them without being responsible for the mess. I am getting a little anxious about this latest version of the virus and have decided to forgo my coffee shop for the time being. :-)

Bindu said...

Pretty photos!

eileeninmd said...

I just love the mid-air bird captures. The starlings do love the suet.
I miss having the bird feeders, I was having too many critter problems.
I do enjoy seeing your birds and photos. I am glad my hubby and I have been vaccinated and we both feel a little safer to have had the booster shot. Take care and stay safe! I am sure everyone would like to see the pandemic come to an end. Take care, have a great day and week ahead! Merry Christmas to you and your family.

margi said...

Great shots! Happy Christmas and stay safe!

Red said...

It appears that crows overwinter on the island. Yes , this next covid wave is going to be brutal.

peppylady (Dora) said...

So true the pandemic is far from over. I never thought of putting a few peanuts on my deck railing.
Coffee is on and stay safe

Lorrie said...

The birds that visit your feeder are interesting in their varied habits, and different from the ones that visit ours. But we notice the territorial aspect of juncos, sparrow, chickadees, nuthatches, and spotted towhees. Their scrapping and vying for space at the feeder is most entertaining.

Our Island also has higher than ever cases of Covid. Three of our grandchildren will be vaccinated this week, and the younger two are much too young for it. We are all being careful, and plan to get together on the 25th.

Have a good week.

Helen said...

Marie it is wonderful that you have the enjoyment of the birds visiting the feeders during each winter. It must be especially so, given the covid restrictions.
Our covid numbers are now increasing with the opening of the state borders.

Goldendaze-Ginnie said...

It's great to see you back, Marie. Only you could present us with such an array of pictures & wonderful descriptions.
Wishing you all the best for now and in the New Year.

Anvilcloud said...

As you will likely read, we were boosted yesterday and have slightly sore arms today but no other symptoms yet. Our plans were modest with a little gathering of a little family. At this point, we don't plan to change them. We are tending toward grocery pickup again although I can envision going in for some items as it is hard to get everything perfectly ordered.

baili said...

these are one of the most beautiful photos i have ever seen dear Marie !!!!!!!!!!!!

God bless your lovely hands who took these delightful shots as they just made my evening believe me :)

so nice that bird keep accompany you if you can't go to meet them ,this meeting is gift i can feel it specially for you ! and for us of course :)

agreed that virus seems quite far from being over ,we are requested to get another shot for new variant .this is weird and i wonder will it end anyway ?

it is effecting borders as well and people like us who are waiting for their loved ones feel terrible .

health ,peace and joy to you and loved ones!

Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

Great photos, the birds in mid air are fantastic.
Prayers y'all will stay well
When they say the new covid variant, omicron is more catchy, that seems to almost be an understatement.
Stay Safe!

Mage said...

It will be a fairly quiet evening here.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

It's clear that you don't have to deal with pesky squirrels, Marie. Your peanuts in the shell would disappear in an instant if you did. All the best to you and Rick for the holidays and a happy New Year with COVID behind us. Now that's wishful thinking!

William Kendall said...

Terrific action shots.

I'm beyond exhausted of Covid.

gluten Free A_Z Blog said...

Hi Marie,
I had my 2nd shot last February so I was well ready to get the booster last a week ago. It's good you are staying in and staying safe. When the weather prohibits me for being outdoors, I usually do Youtube walking videos with Leslie Salone. They are fun, easy, and I get a 2 mile brisk walk. Your photos of the birds are wonderful and as usual I love that you identify the names of the birds for us. I hope you enjoy your holiday time with your family whenever you get to celebrate. Merry Christmas dear blogging friend.

Liz Hinds said...

Do blue jays hop?!
Our birds are fussy. Husband bought a mixed seed/nut pack and they pick out what they like and drop the rest on the floor - where the pigeons scoop it up. I suppose it' symbiotic. No, it's not a the pigeon does nothing for the other birds.
They reduced the time to three months here to try and get everyone done by new year. All adults anyway.
I see someone else mentioned squirrels. That reminds me, we've not seen any at our feeders recently.

Danielle L Zecher said...

That's great that the birds seem to get along and don't try to take each other's food.

Our COVID numbers are soaring again, too. Hubby and I both had our boosters two weeks ago (we qualified because of our jobs), but we're still being careful since the vaccine rate for our county is pretty low.

Pam said...

I love watching the birds at the feeder. I just love watching them in general. But this reminds me....I need to go out and fill my feeders.

Rehoboth Organic said...

wonderful pics

Catarina said...

You took fabulous pictures, Marie!!!!

Because of you I have been paying attention to what is happening in PEI. And in BC where my daughter lives.

It seems I am on pause, not sure how to proceed. : )

Marilyn @ MountainTopSpice said...

Such beautiful pictures you captured of your lovely feathered visitors Marie!

Prayers for my beloved island, that this outbreak of c-virus is contained. I do know that an amazing treatment is working wonders with everyone here who gets the virus, vaxd or unvaxd. It is the antiviral antibodies. It is amazing. My sister had the virus, she is young. She was very very sick. Got the antibody infusion, and within 24 hours was better. A dear neighbor down the road 93+ years old got the virus, and was given the antibodies, and was better, with little more than a cough and a headache within 24 hours. There are treatments that work. The antibodies work best if taken within the first 10 days of positive. Praying that you both stay healthy and well! Merry Christmas to you and your family!

photowannabe said...

Your action shots of your birds are really wonderful. The descriptions that go with each make them perfect.
Stay well and Merry Christmas.

Rhodesia said...

Hi Marie, sorry I am not keeping up very well!!!

Wishing you both Happy holidays and all the best for 2022, may we all get back to living some sort of normal life once more, Cheers Diane

Tabor said...

Just a small gathering with my daughter and her family. WE are all vaccinated and boosted and feeling safe. Hanging in there.

Polly said...

Brilliant photos. Starlings do love fat balls. They are bullies in my garden! I do admire them though.

Rose said...

If I could have anything but startlings I would gladly feed the birds. But once I put it out, the starlings are there and it is gone in no time. I would not mind if it was just a few starlings, but it is a big flock that comes. The funny thing, just a few days ago, I told Roger I had not seen a startling in a while...that maybe I could feed the birds. The next morning there was a gathering of about a dozen on the power line.

The kids will be stopping here on Saturday...they have more to visit than us.

We have had our boosters...

Anita said...

oh yes it is once again strong restictions at Christmas..Happily the Omicron do not get us vaccinated very sick but we suspect a high rate of admissions at the hospital the coming days anyway .It is demanding and we are tired ,doctors and we nurses

Ilove your bird shots!Very nice to see

Iam working this christmas ,all days,
but will have my children here for a dinner in an hour ,pinnekjΓΈtt and multekrem for dessert.Later christmas cakes coffe and so on..

I wish you all good and Merry Christmas to you and family :))

At Home In New Zealand said...

Things are sounding grim, but I hope you and your family still manage to have a happy Christmas Day. Stay safe, Marie.
Big hugz, Mxx

Barwitzki said...

Great ... thank you very much.
What nice photos and your explanations are especially nice. I also fill my bird house and watch several species of birds ...
All good wishes for happiness and joy for you. Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones.

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

I haven’t had a suet feeder in years! Thanks for the reminder. Back in the day I used to make my own suet, and it brought in a wide variety of birds. I am going to go out this week and get a new one (heaven knows what happened to the old one or even if it made the move from our old house to the new one).

Down by the sea said...

Beautiful images, seasons greetings hope you and your family stay safe and well. Sarah x

Barbara said...

Great action photos. You really caught those birds coming in or out.

Violet said...

great post