Monday, September 9, 2013

Hooded Orioles have 'Flown the coup'

September is here, the orioles are not. They have left a little early from our neighborhood - not sure if the string of hot humid weather sent them packing or if this was just a year to leave early. The honey bees were not worse than normal. All the other non-migratory birds are around in the usual numbers.

It's noticeably quieter without their chatter. looking forward to next March!

We are trying to fill the gap by boosting the mourning dove / common ground dove population a bit. The only drawback - now a squirrel or two have been visiting the backyard cleaning out the dove feed. Grrr.. if it is not rabbits, it's crows/ravens or squirrels! I have started raising the bowls to see if I can get them high enough to keep the squirrels out - first round - squirrels 1, me 0.

Now that the orioles are gone for the fall/winter, it's time to change the feeder lineup more toward hummingbird only, this will reduce the bee scavenging some. And maybe another round of mods over the winter on the oriole feeders to make them less bee friendly.

If you visited during the spring, you might remember we had a 'problem' with a sharp shinned hawk taking up lookout in and around the backyard. That would be fine if he only went after the squirrels and rabbits (sorry to those who are fond of them, actually I like them as well, just not in my yard! Or at least, not eating all the bird food). Of course, sharp shinneds go after small birds - and that's not so great. Anyway, it looks like he is back after summering somewhere else for a while. At least the orioles are gone, though we won't encourage him to stay.

I hope everyone has a nice fall and plenty of birds to watch!