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Thursday, January 5, 2017

Today is National Bird Day

It's National Bird Day today, and since I have such a fondness for birds I wanted to take a few minutes to share a few of them with you, as well as some wonderful ideas and resources for caring for and attracting birds to your yard.  I have a bird feeder, which sadly has been packed away in the garage for the past year.  I need to get a hook to hang it from, but my plan is to put it outside my bedroom window.  I am not sure if I will get to that today as the temperatures are not expected to get much higher than the low 30's today, which is too bad because that is when the little birds need seed the most!  But a warm spell will be returning next week, so hopefully I will be able to get it out and functioning before the weather turns cold again.  And with that here are a few of my favorite birds!

One of my absolute favorite birds is the cardinal, and I love both the male and the female species, I think they are both equally beautiful.  I've had the privilege in my lifetime to witness these beautiful birds in a snowy winter setting, and they are simply breathtaking against the stark white backdrop.  There is an old saying that any time a cardinal appears in your yard that it is a visit from a loved one from heaven.  I'm not really one for superstition, but I don't really mind believing that perhaps a loved one is near when I see one!

Another favorite is the little Carolina Chickadee, pictured below.  This cute little black capped bird just makes me so happy.  They are quite small and when we lived in Virginia they were very active at our feeders.  I checked earlier this week at Feeder Watch to see what variety of birds I could attract here and much to my delight all of my favorites are common in this

area including the Carolina Chickadee! Other favorites include the Dark Eyed Junco, the Downy Woodpecker, the Pygmy Nuthatch, and the Tufted Titmouse.  New to me, and a few species I am excited to potentially be able to add to my life list are the Black Billed Magpie,  the Black Crested Titmouse, the Chestnut Backed Chickadee, the Common Redpoll, the Red Breasted Nuthatch which I would LOVE to see, and the Rufous Hummingbird.  I'll have to invest in a few more varieties of feeders to help to attract some of these, which is fine, but there are also a number of little feeders you can make yourself that will attract a good variety to your yard. 

This is a simple design, you just cut an orange in half and spread peanut butter on the exposed side and then dip it in bird seed and  attach cranberry skewers with toothpicks to the outside.  Simple, lovely and functional all at the same time.

One of my favorite resources for birding and making homemade bird feeders is Rebecca's Bird Garden Blog. She has some wonderful ideas for making natural bird feeders and she also has a lovely Easy shop where she sells unique handmade bird feeders and other items for the garden, like this little Irish Wren Bird Cottage, so sweet, and I do love that little strand of garden lights along the rail below!

I also have a Pinterest board where I've collected a number of ideas, many from her blog but from other sources as well, for crafting feeders for our feathered friends!

One of my favorite things to do over the years has been to keep a Life List of birds that I've seen, and you can find an explanation of how to keep one here, and here is a link where you can download and print an actual form to begin keeping track, if you're interested.

I think birds are one of God's loveliest creations and they bring so much joy and beauty to my life! I'm not sure if you care for them as I do, but hopefully I've sparked at least a little interest!  If you do have a favorite, or two, as well as some ideas for caring and feeding them please share!

Until then, my friends, take joy!

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