Friday, October 19, 2018

Yard Birds

Immature White-crowned Sparrow

What a morning! It froze even harder last night, with ice all over the cars when I went out.

White-crowned Sparrow

There was a buck on the lawn, maybe thirty feet from where I walk the dogs. It was still dark, but the yard light showed him calmly rising from his bed, having a nice, leisurely stretch, and then standing there watching me and Mack until I stepped in his direction.

The elusive Field Sparrow...looked for one all year, saw two this week

Then he took off. Brassy lad though....

White-throated Sparrow

So many birds in the yard this morning I didn't know where to look first. Sparrows and American Robins are migrating through like crazy and there is a large flock of mostly immature Cedar Waxwings gobbling everything they can find.

Ditto

It made the morning walk a lot of fun, with 22 species being counted and at least two others being almost counted. I know I heard a Red-breasted Nuthatch, but I only saw in flight and in a hurry so I won't count it. And there were grackles, but I only got a fleeting
glimpse. 

Dark-eyed Junco

Enjoy the sunshine!

Ditto

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Morning Bus with Grandma


"When is the bus going to come, Grandma?"

"Pretty soon, honey. We had to come down a little early because grandma is kind of slow, but it will get here."

Grandma, there's a crocodile in the ditch. It's a big one."

Don't worry honey, "i'll call Tine."




What's he gonna do?"

"Well, first he'll toast it and then when it's all crunchy he will eat it."

"Ooh, good....Grandma, there's bees...."

"Tine will get them too. He likes em. Nice and crispy.

Oh, look, here comes your bus!"


First Frost Last Night

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Just a small one, but a few things got singed. Cold morning for birding too, but there are still Yellow-rumped Warblers around.

Sometimes they look back at me
Song Sparrow


Odd little birds. It is no problem to see them as they fly straight to me as soon as I go into the field where they are feeding. A little harder to get photos though as warblers almost never sit still.

White-crowned Sparrow


White-throated Sparrow


Anyhow....brrrrrrr........

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Such a Drama Queen



The night sky that is. Technically it's actually morning, but it's still as dark as a closet with the light off...but because it is for a change clear you can see the stars.

Orion, which used to be my favorite constellation until I found out he only shows up in winter, is strutting his stuff right outside the back door. Big arrogant buffoon, you just can't miss him.

Ursa Major is doing a headstand near the eastern horizon, no mean feat for a bear that size.

The Twins, Cassiopeia, and most of the other known conglomerations of stars are bright as eagle's eyes as well.

Still, it's cold enough to make you want to hurry the doggos as they go about their morning business. Frost tomorrow night so I really have to drag the last watermelon inside and grab the rest of the house plants. Only a half a dozen or so left...I hope....

Meanwhile, I'm just waiting for the sun to come up. After birding in the rain way too many times recently (did you hear that storm last night???) I am looking forward to heading out without an umbrella handle stuffed in an uncomfortable spot, (I learned this from a World Girl Birder post and it works-hands free and all- but I feel like a sleazy lady of the evening with a brolly instead of a wad of cash) and without rain fogging up all the glass involved in  seeing birds.

Wish me luck. lol




Monday, October 15, 2018

Bad News in the Dairy Industry

These two old ladies....

Been researching for this week's Farm Side and the numbers are even uglier than I imagined.

Dairy farm losses:

Ohio

Wisconsin

Michigan

It's estimated that nearly a third of America's dairy farms have left the industry in the past decade.

According to this article 93% have left the business since I graduated from high school in 1970. 

Some suggest a supply management system may help. Others aren't too trusting of those who might be in charge of the managing.

All I know is that these are hard times for the majority of dairy farmers, with distressing impacts on rural communities everywhere. 

......are all that's left of our herd, which once numbered over 100
including heifers and calves.