Backyard Report on the Koerner Nature Preserve (our outdoor room)

This has been a busy bird week or should I say a busy week for me as I fill the two bird feeders with sunflower seeds. In the several years that we have been doing this, I have never had to refill as often as this. The arborist who visited this week (Davey Tree Care) said that the very wet spring followed by a hot and dry summer (not the beginning, obviously) has created this. It has been particularly difficult for trees and plants in distress and the insect population has been down. The good news from the Davey man is that our trees are in excellent condition and needed no spraying (usually it is a harmless oil).

Surprisingly, he says that the insect population being down could be a bad thing, as it will impact nature. Supposedly Vermont and New Hampshire have had fewer bugs and mosquitoes this year and one wonders what that impact might be.

The Mourning Doves have even been eating sunflower seeds, something that I rarely see, and I have even seen a few crows (they are on a comeback after a virus pretty much killed their population a few years ago).

The one hummingbird who comes pretty much almost daily is now pretty much accustomed to us and not as ‘flighty,’ pun intended. He now is often seen pushing another hummingbird out of the area. I store my hummingbird ‘juice’ that I make in the refrigerator. Four parts water to one part refined, white sugar. You don’t dare use the unrefined sugar we have now taken to because it has too much iron, which is bad for them, from what my research has gleaned. Upon checking it out since I am about to ‘publish’ this post, it appears that more research is needed regarding organic sugar, so the jury is out on that.

The height of fun the other day was when our granddaughter had gone into the playhouse and came back saying, “I found a frog!” I went inside the playhouse I had cleaned out earlier in the day to find that yes, indeed, there was something behind Stewart’s outdoor watering system (so that Stewart has fresh, clean, cool water outside). Behind it, I found a baby toad, about an inch in length. I am sorry I did not take a photo of it. We checked him out and then released him near the pond.

The pond is doing well, is clear, and the goldfish are doing well. I just have to remember to feed them. Since I have been happier about the water clarity, I go back there more often to check it out and feed them.

The amount of chipmunks and squirrels is mind-boggling and luckily our squirrels have not really been able to break into the anti-squirrel feeders we have. They have to content themselves with eating of the ground (the newly raised sidewalk next to the garage). I have to take great care with the chipmunks because they have a habit of trying to make my garage their home.

Although our backyard is not huge, it is a very vigorous, inviting place.

About Richard Koerner

Seventy something, father, papi, educator, organizer, Francophile, traveler, amateur photographer, gardener, cyclist, kayaker, calligrapher, cinephile, reader, and overall renaissance type human being.
This entry was posted in Horticulture, Life in general, Nature, Thoughts and philosophy, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Backyard Report on the Koerner Nature Preserve (our outdoor room)

  1. Patricia Poulin says:

    I was feeding my birds this summer and when Turbo got skunked, I called animal control. When he came out he said that the skunk is being atrtracted by the seed droppings on the ground around the feeders . He suggested that I do not feed the birds in the summmer months in order to keep the skunk(s) away. He did say that he put skunk traps at a few houses behind ours. Not sure if the “not feeding the birds” method or if they caught the skunk(s) method worked, but we have not had them around for a few weeks now. Who knew that the seed droppings would attract the skunks.

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