Thursday, May 13, 2010

Baltimore Orioles Up North

I'm excited about this! I've seen Baltimore Orioles on very rare occasions here in our yard, usually at the top of our big old sycamore tree.

Today, as I was closing a window in the shop and covering the soap, one landed right in front of me and looked in the window!

I was planning to go into the house and as I walked out, I saw him/her(?) fly out of the purple plum right outside the shop and into the sycamore. It hung around and then sort of disappeared into a glob of what looked like dried leaves near the end of a branch.

I went into the shop and got my camera to snap a picture in telephoto mode and see if it was a nest... Yes! It was. I've never seen an oriole nest in person, but have seen lots of pictures of the neat little bag they build.

From one side, it looked like some old leaves that may have gotten caught in the crook of a branch, but I climbed up the hill to try to get a better shot and this was what I got after I enlarged the picture and cropped it. I'll have to keep track of it as it is built - I think there is more to go on it to make it a secure spot for their precious eggs.

It seems to be bird day around here because this past winter, we finally lost our last Guinea hen. But this morning, Bob came home with a dozen week old chicks and set them up in a cage with a heat lamp to nurse them through the first few weeks before we can put them outside in a safe spot to become acclimated to life outside. There is a tree in the spot so they will learn to roost at night.

He also told me he has (I think) 6 silky chicks on order for next week.... Those are the fluffy white chickens. We'll be adding to the menagerie once again.

Between the loud chuck chuck of the Guineas, another few clucks to add to our chicken flock and the sweet clear call of the orioles... it'll be a noisier place around here this summer.

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