Thursday, April 22, 2010

Attack of the Killer Bird

I should have listened to Cindy, who told me about when she was attacked by a Blue Bird and then a Mockingbird when she tried to look into the nest.

Well today, it was Al’s turn.  We usually knock first and then stand back before we peek in. I’m not sure he followed the proper protocol today.

He opened one of the Blue Bird houses that happens to have a Black Capped Chickadee (we have two of them). As he was peeking in, Mama came at him. It startled him and he ended up doing a back flip…well sort of.  He ended up falling backward  then doing a backward summersault!  I sure wish I had it on video!  He hurt his knee a little and I imagine he will be sore tomorrow.  It’s kind of like a car accident.  You feel okay at first, then sore a day or so later!

Our spring blooms are about over, but we still have a few things to look forward to.

This is a white Wisteria.  It bloomed later than the purple ones.  This plant is only a year or so old, so it’s not as full.



It needs some shaping.  It’s actually a bush but I’m trying to make it believe it’s a tree!

We just got back from a few days camping and my nicely mowed grass has all grown back.  I mowed down the rest of the crimson clover field today.  It sure smells good, but it was getting a little thick and hard to mow.  Our Grasshopper mower will mow down small trees easily, but for some reason this clover gives it a work out!

We have 4 newly hatched Blue Birds in the box in the pasture. They hatched while we were gone, so they will fledge in about 12-14 days, if I remember correctly.

The nest by the RV has 5 eggs now, which is the most we’ve ever seen for them. 

We have two Black Capped Chickadee nests with babies in, but one should fledge very soon.

The gardens are coming along nicely.  We have some blooms on one tomato plant.  The peaches and apples are getting big and the potato plants are huge. Nothing to pick yet, but it’s coming!  Unfortunately so are the weeds.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Spring Bloom and Bird Nests

Well Spring not only brings beautiful spring flowers, but the birds are building their nests.

These are Black Capped Chickadees.  They should be about ready to fledge.


Here is a blooming bush.  We have never figured out what it is, but isn’t it pretty?


It’s rose season.



Sunday, April 18, 2010

Bird Nests

Well we have 4 eggs in one Blue Bird nest box, and 5 eggs in the other!  That's the first time any of the Blue Birds have laid more than 4 eggs.  One nest box is right next to where we park the motor home, and I know the birds will be happy when we move it out of their "yard" for a few days!

One of the Blue Bird nest boxes has newly hatched Black Capped Chickadees.  Al was able to get a photo, I'll get it posted later.

In the barn, I hung an old jute macrame hanging planter there for lack of any other place to hang it.  Well Nancy (Carolina Wren) has made a nest out of it!  They are such amazing little birds.  We read that the male makes several nests for the female  to choose from.  They are one of our favorite birds...they have so much personality!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Blue Bird Nests

We currently have two Blue Bird nests on the property.  There are 4 eggs in one nest and 3 in the other.  I think 4 is their limit, as we’ve never seen a nest with more than 4 eggs. They seem to be able to lay one egg per day, so I expect their will be another one today.

I had forgotten how long it takes for the eggs to hatch, so I pulled out my trusty Blue Bird book.  It says egg laying is 5-7 days, nest building is 1-6 days, incubation is 12-14 days, brooding is 6 days.

I’m not really sure the difference between incubation and brooding, but I think brooding is when the eggs are sat on 24/7.

Here is a picture of “Junior” from last year. He was the only egg that hatched from the 4 that were laid.  He survived and fledged.  He was only one day old here.

2nd day after hatching, hungry

Blue bird 2nd day after hatching

Amazing, isn’t it?

Here he is eleven days later.  Notice the 3 unhatched eggs?


He is almost ready to fledge.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

What's a Trillion?

Just heard something interesting on TV.  With all the talk lately of the deficit, TARP, etc the word trillion gets tossed out a lot.  It's a number that is hard to comprehend.

If you look at your watch a  MILLION seconds is 11 days.

A BILLION seconds is 32 years.

A TRILLION SECONDS IS 32,000 years!   Wow.

Glenn Beck had a program a while back showing what a trillion dollars looked like.  In searching for that video I came across  this  Blog .  It shows the same thing Glenn Beck had on his program.  Blows your mind, doesn't it?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Smelling the Roses

One thing Al and I do, it take time to “smell the roses.”

We took a little drive yesterday around town to look at all the pretty spring blooms.

Here is a little of what we saw.

The Azaleas are starting to get real pretty.










We haven’t figured out what exactly this is, but isn’t it beautiful?








Japanese Red Maple

P1010078Every day it seems there are new things blooming so we try to get out and look often.  Spring is certainly beautiful in Georgia.  It’s so much prettier than Tampa’s spring. 

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Gold Finch Watching

Al attached a bird feeder to the kitchen window. It makes a great place to bird watch.  We still have Gold Finches here and they are starting to really turn yellow.  They are winter birds here and normally by the time they turn real yellow, they migrate north.  Not very nice is it?
The cats enjoy the window.
Tufted Titmouse
House Finch
Gold Finch
Cleveland Flowering Pear
Miss Squeaky “camping” in the motor home and on the new bed.
More Wisteria

Lazy Day

We had to go into town yesterday to pick up the Honda from getting the window replaced.  We decided to have the new tint put on while we were there. So at least that little project was finished.  It was a bit of a hassle, but at least it's done.

Once we came home, we decided to do like Al's Grandma and Granda Pa Lueck recommended and take a nap after lunch!  They were farmers who worked very hard and they believed a short nap after lunch was good for you! They lived well into their 90's, so they may have been on to something!  It sounded good yesterday so we went up to the motor home, and took a nap on our new "Bed in a Box" mattress.  Boy is that a comfortable mattress.  It's more comfortable than our home mattress.  I find that I start out sleeping on my left side and when I wake up, I haven't moved.  I think it is soft enough so that you don't get sore and firm enough to keep you comfortable. 

I had planned to wash the Honda because it was covered with yellow pollen.  The rain we had on Thursday brought in a cool front with a stiff breeze, so I just couldn't get motivated to play in the water.  The dirty car will have to wait.  The temperature got up into the high 70's but the breeze made it cool.

I decided to mow a little.  I am chief mower on the rider and Al does all the trimming, regular mowing, fire ant killing, and "Round Up"  With our large property, there is always something that needs mowing, so it's a good thing I enjoy it.

The rain washed pollen off the grass and trees and also helped to green things up a lot.

 This is a flowering shrub we have in our yard.  We have never figured out what it is but once a year, it blooms profusely.  Here it is, just starting to flower.  I'll post another picture when it's in full bloom.

Yesterday, I decided to mow part of our clover meadow.  The Crimson Clover is very pretty, and it smells wonderful, but that clover can get pretty thick and it can be a bit difficult to mow (even with our commercial grade Grasshopper mower) once it gets too thick.  When I mow the clover, that song from the 60's runs through my head.  Crimson Clover....Tommy James and the Shondells, I think.  I hated that song back then, and still do, but I can't help but hear it in my head when I'm running thru the Crimson Clover!   The clover field is really beautiful when the clover is in full bloom, and I accidentally mowed a little too large of area...Al wasn't happy with me.  Sometimes when I mow, I get carried last week when I murdered a hose and spray handle!

Once the sun started to go down, it started to get really cool, so we came in and watched a few episodes of "Friday Night Lights" from our Roku/Netflix.  That is a really good show.  It has been on Tv for years and we never watched it.  We're catching up on it now.

Today we plan to stay around the house, except for a quick trip to Walmart to get Al a new battery for his little spray rig.  He has a tank that he puts in the back of a little red trailer.  It has a pump, and he can spray for fire ants or put down Round up.  He pulls the trailer with the Golf Cart and it works quite well for him.  This is just too much property to try to walk around and to this kind of thing.  The Fire Ants are a never ending battle in South Georgia.  You just have to keep spraying the ant hills and the best you can do is control them.  They will never be completely gone.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Fringe Trees and More

The spring bloom just keeps getting better.

Here what I call Fringe Trees.  I’m not sure if this is the correct name or not, but aren’t they beautiful?  They are not in our yard, unfortunately, although we do have a small one.




Spirea is blooming everywhere.  Ours are still small plants, but still pretty.


These are pretty weeds that are abundant (unfortunately) in the pasture. They go away once it gets hot.


These are what we call Easter Lily’s but grow wild this time of the year.  They make great cut flowers and are so pretty.  They are abundant in the pasture and one part of the yard we call Bluebirdy Meadow.  While mowing it yesterday, I just couldn’t bring myself to mow them down, so I mowed around them. 


More of my favorite…Wisteria



Image013 P1010048

Today was the day of the appointment for the window replacement.  The glass had remained in the window but it shattered in a million little pieces, just being held together by the window film.

For some reason the drivers door wouldn’t shut properly.  We finally figured out it must be because of small fragments of glass going into the frame.  Al had to drive into town with the door bungeed shut!  Not too safe!    Part way into town Al decided to stop and take the window completely out because the wind was about to do it for him while he was driving!  Anyway, the window is done and the door closes (or so the body shop says). We haven’t picked it up yet because it was storming.   Besides, if we have to go into town tomorrow, we will probably have to get a Grits cup!