Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Birds in the garden

Hope all of you with snow and ice are safe! We got lucky Monday night as we only got maybe an inch of snow. It misted all day yesterday you could not see any rain but you could feel it when walking around outside. The mist and my camera did not seem like a great idea, so I set up a chair under the porch and waited for the birds to come back to the feeders.

We had our second visit from a single Bluejay, I do not have any photos of this beautiful bird. The Bluejay was out there before I went out to photograph and never returned. Bluejays like neighborhoods not forest like where we live, in fact I lived here 3 years before I ever saw one here.

 Song Sparrow on top of the hoop house cold frame covered in snow. We have mainly 3 different sparrows in the winter here, White-throated Sparrow(the most common), Chipping Sparrow and Song Sparrow as seen here they are our only year round resident sparrow. A fourth sparrow the Fox Sparrow has been seen in years past but has not made an appearance in years here.

 Pondering Song Sparrow.
 Female Northern Cardinal ready to fly.

Here is an image I adjusted in Photoshop by using poster edges, a very simple trick, pretty neat?
 Telephoto shot of the top of the new bottle tree. I added a clear bottle to the top. The second bottle down is an 8 ounce caster oil bottle I found. You also can see 1.5 liter, .75 liter and 6 ounce Riesling bottles.

One special bird returned yesterday while I had the camera out, a Brown Creeper made its 6th appearance this winter on the white oak by our deck. I took photos but they were too poor to post here.
So one might ask what is blooming in out garden. Here is our Helleborus niger covered ice ice and snow. This was the 5th time these blooms have been buried in snow or ice, tough plant don't you think?
One of the front garden pansies covered up in snow and ice. The pansies and violas under the over hang of our porch not covered in snow look pretty bad because they do not have the protection the snow gives them during temps down in the 20s.

Be sure to check out the dog treat or dog cookie  recipe on my last posting.

23 comments:

tina said...

Your hellebores are looking good albeit under ice and snow. Wow! They are a hardy bunch. The bird photos beautiful. We have all those sparrows plus the white crowned and house sparrow. If I could only figure out how to chase off the house sparrow and keep the rest. Sigh. Love the bottle tree~! Bet it shines in all the white. Happy New Year to you!

Janet said...

I too was taking bird photos this morning. None are really worthy of posting. I guess mostly wanted to made some ID's. I think one of the ones I saw was a Song Sparrow. There were a couple Towhees scooting around on the ground...all photos blurry.
I have one photo of a Brown Creeper, blends in with the bark of the tree. Cute little guy none the less.
My sister has Photoshop and does some fun stuff with her pictures. Your squirrel is kind of fun.
I have seen three Bluejays in our forest... but not often.

Randy Emmitt said...

Tina,

I know you have been gone from blogging for a short period and was hoping you would see the bottle tree. I have a full post on it a few posts back, it is 11 ft tall!

Janet,

Betting if you have lots of sparrows most are white-throated and surely some Song Sparrows. You might also have Swamp Sparrows as you are near the lake. Towhees have visited here but it has been some time since I've seen them in the yard.

Cyndy said...

So interesting about the blue jays - love the squirrel photoshop. The hellebores are amazingly tough and beautiful - nice captures!

Darla said...

We have Bluejays just about year round here. Man it looks cold there! Strange to see the bud encased in ice. Pretty cool what you did with the squirrel photo.

Kim and Victoria said...

Beautiful cardinal. That hellebore IS one tough plant indeed!

keewee said...

We don't get the cardinals here, they are such a pretty bird.

Carol said...

Randy, What a beautiful female Cardinal shot! I wonder what your little fluffed out Song Sparrow is considering? Hellebores are amazingly hardy plants . . . but they do look very cold there entrapped in ice! Brown Creepers blend so well with the tree bark that I find them very hard to photograph. We are getting tons of snow today, but no ice! Yeah! I hope yours is all melted today.

Southern Lady said...

Your bird pictures are wonderful! This snow that we have had really kept our feeders busy over the last few days. My hellebores haven't bloomed yet. I think they are still there under the snow. Carla

eileeninmd said...

Beautiful photos of your birds. I live practically surrounded by woods and can see bluejays everyday. They love peanuts in the shell.

HAZEL said...

As always, great photos. I love the one of the sparrow on the post. Such subtle colours.

compost in my shoe said...

Those Hellebores look might cold! Beautiful shots all around. As usual!!!!

sweetbay said...

We just started seeing Blue Jays around now after opening up the space during the house move. We have lots of Song, White-Throated, and Chipping Sparrows here, as well as Field Sparrows. Very occasionally a Fox or White-Crowned.

I especially like the last shot of the hellebore, lovely!

Beth said...

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog, Randy. I've enjoyed my visit to yours. Your photos are amazing. I especially enjoy the bird shots. I occasionally am able to get a passable bird shot, but am limited a bit by my point-and-shoot. I really like your bottle tree. I appreciate knowing where you got your bottles. I've wanted a bottle tree for a while, but wondered where folks found all those pretty glass bottles. Now I know!

By the way, I was intriqued by your description of yourself as a "liberal handyman." My husband is also (or perhaps he would call himself a liberal/moderate). He really likes the guys he works with (as a Maintenance Man), but doesn't find many fellow liberals. :-)

Skeeter said...

I really do enjoy bird watching during snowy days! We have so many Blue Jays in our yard that I will ask a few to move your way! LOL. Neat "Poster" picture of the squirrel. I may try to play a bit with that one...

Homemade doggie treats were a bit hit in our craft store when in Germany...

Your new stove looks so warm and cozy!

Ah, another bottle tree. You all are trying so hard to get me to place one. I just may have to one day :-)

Congrats on your 200th post! Has been a fun ride...

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

Those Hellebores are tough flowers aren't they? The poor thing isn't getting a chance to bloom. Our pansies are very sad looking too.
I love those song sparrows, we see them around here too, though usually more are around in spring.

Kerri said...

Beautiful captures! It has been very cold & windy here - and flurries every day .... but we did not get that last big one!

Shady Gardener said...

Great photos - the "doctored" photo of the squirrel was amazing. (But I really like the "real thing" better...) ;-)

My aunt sees the Brown Creeper often. I spotted it at her place two years ago. After returning home after that trip, I actually saw one in my backyard!! But I'm not good at spotting them, I guess.

However, my Carolina Wren was back today!! Yea!

Char's Gardening said...

I did not know that Bluejays liked neighborhoods and not wooded areas. I wondered why I didn't see any Bluejays around here. I live where there are lots of woods. Thank you now I know.

Brie said...

I have been wondering about the Bluejays. In the spring, I only see some on the left part of my house, when I see them...I thought they were disappearing like the bees...thanks for this info - our backyard is very wooded.

Jan@Thanks for today. said...

Can't believe your Helleborus are already blooming! Here, there is no snow or ice and everything is just brown. I do have Hellebore foliage but have seen no buds yet. Am collecting blue bottles for the 'tree' of my future...still don't have one of those yet but will, someday:-)

Garden Lily said...

Nice photos. I love the poster edges version of that squirrel, it turned out fantastic.

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