Archive for March, 2006

Try some raw shelled peanut feeding

Since we open the store a little bit later on Sundays, I get the chance to observe our feeders a bit more closely and for a longer period of time in the morning before coming in.

I knew we were getting low in the big feeder, so I brought home a bag of our Fully Belly Deli Plus feed. A blend I make up that includes a little bit of everything we offer, other than Nyjer.

As I was watching the chickadees with our binoculars, who were the first to arrive as usual, it was really cool to see how they pick seeds. And one of the surprises is that as much as they seem to prefer black oil sunflower seed, they were going CRAZY for the raw shelled peanuts in the blend.

Just about every one would hunt for a peanut half before flying off. I’ve sold a lot of peanut feeders since we bought the store. If you haven’t tried it, you might want to. You’ll get more woodpeckers and nuthatches, but it seems all wildbirds enjoy them as well.

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Common Redpoll Sitings and Tufted Titmouse Calls

I am getting more and more reports of common redpoll sitings at feeders, and in pretty large numbers. So keep an eye out for the little red beanie on the top of their heads. They’re sure to visit your feeders before they head back up north!

Also, I’ve heard from at least one other customer that they have some really loud titmouse calls going on. I have at least one, maybe two that are singing up a storm the past couple of days. My guess is that the pairing up season has begun, and he who sings loudest gets the best girl!

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In praise of mourning doves

As promised by the weather folks, it has been very cold here the past week, and we did finally get a pretty good snow cover. One morning the other day, when with the wind chill it was about 15 below zero, I caught the site of a puffed up furry ball on one of the branches of the pine trees in our front yard.

I got the binoculars out and sure enough, it was a mourning dove, feathers all puffed up to keep warm. Pretty soon I was able to spot about 5 more in the same condition. It’s amazing that birds have the ability to be outside, even when it’s so cold out.

The point today… even mourning doves need food, and I am now really glad I use a seed blend that includes the white millet and cracked corn that these lovely, delicate birds enjoy.

The feelings people have over the type of birds that visit their feeding stations is not something I always completely understand, but today is my day to salute the mourning dove. They mate for life, have a wonderful cooing call, and can even stand the cold we have here in Vermont.

So when you feed the birds, especially as we continue into that time of the year they need food the most, don’t forget the mourning dove.

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