The Backyard

The Backyard

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Taking a Break - Enjoying the Beauty

This is the time of year us northerners sit back, relax, and start daydreaming of spring and getting our fingers dirty again.  The temperature is currently 19 degrees (Fahrenheit).  The ground is frozen and not  too much is going on in the backyard in terms of food production.   My FEDCO seed catalog is close-at-hand and dozens of pages are already turned down as I peruse the catalog in the warmth of my cozy little house.  Now that the leaves are down, mother nature is making another showing for us -- bird nests.   Yesterday, hubby and I found this very-coolly-constructed nest in a sugar maple tree near our house.  It's a nest I never saw before.  Bird nests are interesting to look at and figure out what breed of bird constructed them.  Through the years, common nests we found near our house are the stick nests of mockingbirds, the grass nests of eastern bluebirds, the horsehair nests of the house finch, the feathery cavity nest of a sparrow, the mud nest of a robin and also swallows make mud nests, and the beautiful hanging nest of a Baltimore oriole.  The nest in this picture, we believe, is a red-eyed vireo - a unique, new find for us.  I can't say I've ever spotted this type of bird on our property, so I'm doubly excited about the find.  One nest eludes me -- the hummingbird.  Hummingbirds frequent our property spring after spring, yet I never saw one of these compact, tiny nests. I'm sure mother nature will share one of these with me some day too.  We're looking forward to that day.