The Yard.

Today I kind of wanted to go out on an adventure to somewhere new, but I just could not muster the energy.  I knew the dogs would be miserable once the temperature rose so I decided to stay home, take care of some crap I had been ignoring, and fill up the kiddie pool.  So yeah, this is a yard bird post.

After a bunch of yard work I sat down on the deck with some water and my camera.  A couple of Anna's Hummingbirds provided the initial entertainment.

No eyes!


Blue-eyed Darner? 

My twinberry is super popular, in case you hadn't noticed.  At the coast I have seen waxwings enjoying the berries, but my waxwings rarely leave the ash tree canopy.  The apple tree in my neighbor's yard attracts a lot of birds.  Today it was crows.  Their apple-eating skills are awkward, but overall efficient. 

Jake was looking hot so I decided to fill up the kiddie pool for him.  I sat down in a chair next to it, plopped my feet in, and opened a raspberry sorbet pop thing.  Out of the corner of my eye I could see a bird on the ash tree, not very high up.  A White-breasted Nuthatch!

I cannot explain how happy this made me, but I will try to anyway.  This is a bird I have trouble finding near my house, a bird that has been a motorless nemesis this year.  A bird never before seen in my yard.  And this dude (dudette?) was just hanging out like he had been hanging out here for years.

After awhile of pecking around the tree, the nuthatch started visiting my feeder and engaging in a typical nuthatch behavior I had not been privy to previously:  seed storage.

Step 1: acquire seed

 Step 2: stuff seed under moss

 Step 3: grab more moss

 Step 4: pack that moss on top of the seed to keep those pesky chickadees from finding it

Step 5: repeat

Now, this is a behavior that would indicate the nuthatch is storing seeds for winter.  It's August 2nd.  Is this dude planning on sticking around?  Or is it just a natural reaction to discovering a new feeder filled with sunflower seeds?  I hope for the former. 

Other birds seen today:  Lesser Goldfinches, House Finches, House Sparrows, Black-capped Chickadees, Turkey Vultures, crows, Song Sparrows, Barn Swallows, and a Eurasian Collared-Dove.

In other yard news, I hand pollinated my first pumpkin!  After a couple of pumpkin failures I decided to try the old DIY method and it's been a success!  Can't wait for it to get really big, though I am afraid Michele has dropped out of our pumpkin competition. 

Motorless Year Bird #120, a growing pumpkin, and a kiddie pool!  Making the best of the worst season.  Good times!