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Old 05-03-2009, 01:32 PM   #11
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My acre looks a little messy but I counted 14 types of birds in a 30 minute count last summer. Of these there were 4 or 5 which actually nested right in the yard. Oriole, robin, wren, jay and some sort of grackle or blackbird.

My human neighbors probably wished I'd clean it up. The avian neighbors insist on having winter forage and cover and nesting spots in spring. Somehow I answer to the call of the wild and my neighbors [regretfully] get ignored.

Today I think I located a brown thrasher nest in the choke cherry. There's a cardinal and robin nesting. The orioles haven't returned (yet). One year I had the tiny wren pair. When their eggs hatched there were wrens all over the place. The youngsters were nearly tame.

I enjoy watching these birds. I've only once seen a hummingbird here. All the other species make up for it.

Donna in Nebraska
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Old 05-03-2009, 02:06 PM   #12
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I ignore my neighbors who want us to keep up with the Joneses. It's better that way. They never did like that we didn't convert the majority of our property to turf. We don't fit in. We aren't alone any more. There are a few other families that have left the majority of their properties wild.
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Old 05-03-2009, 04:56 PM   #13
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Well midwesternerr, what have we decided on to use or not to use bird feeders?
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Old 05-03-2009, 10:15 PM   #14
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These are my birdfeeders. I took them down today to soak in a 10% bleach solution. I dunk them in the bleach water for 15 minutes or longer. Usually longer since I walk off to do other things. Then I scrub them and hose them down with fresh water. I fill them back up with seed after they are dry so the holes don't get clogged. I bleach everything I have that birds use. Even my hummingbird and oriole feeders. It is so easy to do. It takes only a few minutes. You don't need to scrub them unless you have time.
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Songbirds dying in alarming numbers- we can help-bleaching-my-birdfeeders.jpg   Songbirds dying in alarming numbers- we can help-bleaching-more-birdfeeders.jpg   Songbirds dying in alarming numbers- we can help-letting-them-air-dry-after-scrubbing-hosing-them.jpg  
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Old 05-04-2009, 07:39 AM   #15
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TheLorax - that looks like a good system.

My neighbor feeds the birds. I have three water pans set out plus my hell's acre full of weeds and bugs. I get the nesters which my neighbor's feed attracts. Although they do clean up what the hens don't eat - the scratch grains.

I admit to feeding birds when the ground is clogged with hard or deep snow. I pitch a couple of cups of seed out the front door on those days. Plus a fistful of peanuts for the bluejays. It's hard to watch the little guys shivering out there with no means to get to the soil. They're so quick to find the seed. And they disappear when the snow is melted. Off finding their own stuff then.

My neighbor has a heated water pan going all winter for the birds too.

Donna in Nebraska
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Old 05-04-2009, 09:32 AM   #16
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I did a research roundup a while back on bird feeding, and it seems most of the bird experts seem to agree that feeding the birds (using proper sanitation & procedures) is helpful because it educates people about birds and helps maintain an interest in nature & birds especially. Maybe someone will come over and see all the birds at your feeder, and that will prompt him or her to go home and read more about birds and end up planting a birdscape. Plus being able to look out the window and see the birds is probably a good motivator and reminder to each of us what is at stake through our actions or inactions.
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Old 05-11-2009, 07:54 AM   #17
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I love my birdfeeders. I keep two with sunflower seeds, two fro hummers, and I keep trying the orioles, but the coon love the oriole feeder and are always knocking it down. I've never counted how many different kinds there are, but it is quite alot. Chickadees, nuthatches, titmice, buntings, juncos, woodpeckers, blue jays, cardinals, goldfinches, and even indigo buntings. I also have alot of hummers. But, in addition to the feeders, I have thousands of native plants, and live adjacent to a woods. So we have really good habitat. The feeders are usually empty within a day or two. I avoid filling them when we have alot of rain. Sometimes I don't fill them for a couple days either. I really love sitting and watching the birds. I especially love the big woodpeckers when they come to the suet!
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Old 05-11-2009, 11:18 PM   #18
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I have woodpeckers that peck away at dead trees. I have binoculars and can watch them having a field day. I only put out suet during the winter months but that's fun to watch them going at that.
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Old 05-12-2009, 03:14 PM   #19
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yeah, I don't put out suet much at this time of year, it's too warm. Sometimes as a treat, but not on a daily basis. I have a bunch of dead trees around. Most people cut them away, but I know the value of them! I get pileateds on them. They are really cool to have around!
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:26 PM   #20
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I don't cut any dead trees away unless they're close to the house and have been dead a while. Do you make your own suet?
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