This morning as I stumbled into the kitchen, set up the coffee maker I became enraptured with the birds feeding outside the breakfast nook big window. While the coffee was cooking in the Kurig cooker with my “Fog Chaser ™” brand I sat down to watch the birds and turned on the PBS classical station for music. Lilting music from the Sunrise String Quartet playing Hyden’s Opus 76, as I remember, just lulled me into a mindset of no thoughts, no cares, no worries-just complete joy, with a focus on the 100 plus birds outside my window.
My reverie was broken by the coffee maker-Ah Yes! – There is no life without coffee. I limit my self to two cups a day with herbal tea interspersed. I make a Brown Betty pot of Small Flower Willow Herb tea for men’s health mixed with Chamomile.
After a bit I went outside to add more seed and peanut suet to the birds fare on this icy, cold day. We are getting closer to spring with thaws and snow back and forth. The birds and bees know spring is coming as I watched two Doves mating in the tree branches, and the Juncos were rubbing beaks. The extra suet and wild bird food is necessary for their breeding and nesting time.
Actually few Red male Cardinals will come to the feeder first seeing me in the window. In fact they will sit in the tree branches and stare at me until the free lunch is provided-then they flock down, perhaps twenty at a time for the black oil sunflower seeds. The Cardinal females are fewer at this time as they have not flown up from the south. Soon though there will be more hatchlings.
There is quite a variety of birds, more each year and the attraction of an odd feeder. There are some Robins in the cluster, but as ground feeders for a manicured lawn (not me). The wild Red Sumac berries in the background of the big feeder have sustained them. Now we know what else Robins can feed on in times of frozen ground. I encourage the spread of Red Sumac.
Diane and I are quite thrilled with the three varieties of woodpeckers haunting the suet. We have the small Downy Wood pecker, a larger Downy with a red head and of course the largest of the three a Red Breasted woodpecker. Sometimes, quite rarely from the surrounding forest a very big Pileated Woodpecker will pay a visit, but they are shy birds.
A few Starlings are waiting for the huge flocks working their way north. They are quite beautiful in flight. These are some lovely photos for your computer desktop. Rather like schools of minnows in the ocean. Watch them on Youtube:
FLASH UPDATE: Now, two weeks later we see baby Cardinals fluttering their wings, begging for Mom or Dad to feed them, but it is time to grow up once out of the nest and feed yourself. There will be more hatchlings as time moves along.
The weather is still warm and cold, interspersed with rain followed by a low 20 F tonight. That means I will be thinking of the baby kittens I spied in the woodshed. But they are growing with open eyes, and I’ll bet they will be scurrying around in another week.
Deer abound on the hay field in front of the house. I do not see any fawns yet-hiding in the bushes. I average a small constant herd of deer about 5-to 7 deer mostly comprised of does. The bucks keep to the brush but I can hear them making noises and snorting. I do not allow hunting on this land because of safety; bullets travel impossible distances and can penetrate houses nearby.
I do have a shooting range that will require more upgrades-maybe this summer with a measured range of 100 yards. My neighbor also has a shooting range of 100 yards and a solid back to stop the bullets. This is of course necessary in our overcrowded community. Ammunition is still in short supply. The predominate supply appears to be based on the millions of AR 15 rifles recently sold firing the .223 ammunition. I mention this, as I want to remind avid shooters to look at their rifle and if it is stamped 5.65 you can fire .223 safely. But if it is stamped .223 you are advised not to use 5.65 (military) as it has a slightly bigger case which will in the long run damage your rifle.
The other big seller in carbines and handguns is 9MM (Luger). I have a hard time reconciling to the fact that a couple of decades ago the so-called Black Tallon ammunition was labeled as “Cop Killers” and banned. Nowadays that old Black Tallon is obsolete when you consider the terrible tissue damage with modern bullet designs. Not that I am against owning or purchasing such ammunition, I suggest to be careful with it as the lethal aspects are far more dangerous today. Then again, Homeland Security, Social Security, FBI, and related US Government agencies, have over a billion of these rounds-why?
My serenity is quashed if I think of such factoids. I have to focus on the birds and the beauties of nature, one minute at a time otherwise the stress of modern life will overwhelm me. Perhaps the constant stressors of news-horrible news, will cause you stress too!
My advice is to go back to the beginning of this article and watch the birds. While seeking serenity I trust you are enjoying the new layout for B2L articles as re-arranged by my publisher and friend, Rose Bowen of New River Valley News, and other publications. Perhaps you would want one of these beautiful websites.
COPYRIGHT: 2014, Back2theLand.com. All rights reserved