CFFC: Birds

It has been a very busy summer for our birds, even though I haven’t taken as many pictures as usual. This is because I have a lot of bird pictures, so unless it’s one of the rare birds — or at least rare to me — I wait until something interesting happens.

And something interesting happened. For the years of lockdown, Owen and I had been making a lot of bread. Among the many things I kept in case I might need it was burghul, which is unrefined whole wheat. If you add a quarter of a cup to a loaf of rye or other dark bread, it makes a nice crunch. It’s also good on the outside of the loaf for a crunchy crust.

Downy on the left, Hairy on the right. Look alikes except for size

Our baking was highly successful and Owen put on a lot of weight which he has managed to mostly take off, so we aren’t baking. Fresh bread and butter is one of the world’s most delicious foods. The smell alone will add pounds to ones hips. I do miss the fresh bread, especially hot popovers.

Goldfinch at the feeder
A Cardinal and a Mourning Dove

So there was this 5-pound bag of burghul that had been in my cabinet for three years. It was still sealed and perfectly usable. Except it wasn’t going to get used anytime soon. I decided to put it out for the birds. I didn’t even know if our birds ate grain.

The moment I poured it into the flat feeder, birds started showing up from all over the woods. Chickadees and Blue Jays and for the first time, Flickers, or more formally, Red-Shafted Northern Flickers — which are the only kind that live around here. I knew they live in the area, but I’d never seen them.

Devoted Swans

But they apparently had heard of me or at least our feeders. Flickers are a kind of woodpecker, but they don’t hammer their heads against oaks to get grubs. They are seed-eaters — and they really loved that burghul, as did the goldfinch and chickadees and jays.

There are more. We have a lot of birds in this area, probably because we are lucky enough to still have trees. We don’t see many shore birds who usually stay near the ocean, but we do get a lot of fresh water birds — ducks, herons and swans. We used to see a lot of egrets, but I haven’t seen any in quite some time.

Quails at Ironstone Farm

I’ve had grouse wander out of the woods onto our back lawn and there are wild turkeys everywhere, though I’ve never had a camera in my hand when we see them — which is usually when Garry is standing on the brakes trying not to hit them.

I can say that having all these birds sharing my world — and of course the squirrels and a very fat woodchuck who occasionally waddles out from under the back hedge. These creatures kept me sane when we weren’t able to go anywhere or do much of anything.

May we keep these creatures great and small, alive and strong. They make our world a better, richer place for everyone.

Categories: #Birds, #CFFC, #gallery, #Photography, Blackstone Valley, Cee's Photo Challenge

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8 replies

  1. Great photos! I love your narrative with it. I have a waterfall in my backyard that all of the migrating birds use, but it is still not the colorful variety that you have! Amazing!


    • It’s because this area has a lot more trees than anywhere else in the country. We have most of lur original birds — but not all — and some that were elsewhere and moved here when they couldn’t survive somewhere else.

      Honestly, it’s the trees. They need TREES. The need wild spaces. We keep cutting them down and they have nowhere to go, so they migrate if they can, or they die. MILLIONS of them are dying. Maybe not in my little patch of woods, but that’s what’s going on.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s really sad! They keep cutting the trees down here too, or they butcher them to the point where the animals lose their habitat (and usually the tree ends up dying without enough leaves to do photosynthesis). It’s everywhere. Brazil is destroying a lot of the rainforest right now, which is devastating for the whole planet and all of the amazing animals there. Here in California, we have an extreme drought with a lot of fires, so we lose even more trees. Without shade, it gets hotter…it’s a vicious cycle. I usually talk about saving trees because they help combat climate change as the largest carbon users, but we should always remember all of the habitat loss for all of the animals.


        • Trees and earth are the basics for everything — animal and vegetable. If we make the planet unsafe for us, all our dependent wildlife will probably die too. But hey, that will really make life great for the ants and the cockroaches!


  2. I knew you’d have a great gallery of birds to show off. 😀 😀 You didn’t disappointment me 😀


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