Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Our Friends and Neighbors

The borders of my yard are porous. Plants come in to live (or be ruthlessly removed), and animals come and go as they please. For a while a skunk was living under my shed. If he is there now we are keeping such different schedules that we are not disturbing each other. Four squirrels live in my yard against my will. They sit on the railing of my shed waiting for me to fill the bird feeders, and apparently spend the rest of their time burying acorns among my flowers which germinate into stubborn seedlings to pull out. This morning I surprised a chipmunk checking out the veggie patch.

I also have a lot of insect life. Although there is a beehive across the street I usually see wilder pollinators. Bumble bees, smaller bees and wasps, butterflies and helicopter moths visit at will. Insect predators follow: spiders and dragonflies wait for their chance.

I have a lot of birds visiting as well, and since it looks to have been a good reproductive season so far I am hoping to attract even more birds next year. I have seen baby blue jays, robins, cardinals and doves so far this year. I have seen pairs of orioles, house finches and goldfinches, downy and hairy woodpeckers, nuthatches, titmice, red winged blackbirds and a few different sparrows. This morning I saw a single catbird visiting. Of course we have grackles, cowbirds, and crows, fortunately not in huge numbers. These days I generally see the crows being chased away by smaller birds. The crows themselves chase away a red tailed hawk when it comes too close.


zippiknits...sometimes said...

That's a busy bee in what looks to be a Hollyhock. What a lovely garden post. Thank you for sharing your garden shots.

We get a lot of birds herem too, so haven't got a lot of trouble with insect pests (knocks on wood).

Xtreme English said...

Sharp eyes! and lovely photos. I heard a crow yesterday in our yard, and it was so wonderful. I think the crows are coming back after getting kicked in the teeth by West Nile virus at the turn of the century. Love crows!