Saturday, June 20, 2015

I am not going to the Hamburg Family Fun Fest this weekend

I have learned all I want to know about starlings, whose beaks are dark in winter and yellow in summer.
They are bullies.
They may or may not live near you. Please check the copied map for the grey coverage areas (thanks to

They make a mess of your eaves and the surrounding fascia.
They enjoy nuts and fruit and all manner of suet.
They squawk with annoying repensity (if this is not a word, it should be).
They do not like safflower seed.
They do not like to feed underneath cover.

I found a local farm and feed store that sells safflower seed at a pretty good price and will keep my feeder filled with that for a while. That is Action Point 3.

Action Point 1 was to hang white plastic shopping bags near the gaps in our siding where the opportunist Sturnus vulgaris used to enter their (rent-free) nesting spots. One of the two bags did deter the starlings and now I have only one nest site to deal with.

Action Point 2 actually moves in the PG-13 to R rating; the details will therefor be withheld from this forum.

Action Point 4 follows from the last item I learned in my search to find out all I wanted to know about starlings. Since they can demolish an entire suet cake in about an hour, and thereby do not allow the other smaller, prettier, songier birds to also enjoy, I have purchased bowls to cover the cages. I will drill a hole in the bottom of the bowls and slip the hanging chain through the hole. Chickadees, finches, woodpeckers and nuthatches apparently don't mind hanging a little cocked to eat their fill. So I will finish this project, take some photos, and share my observations.

Otherwise, the hummingbirds have been making short work of my 4 to 1 nectar hanging right outside our kitchen window. They seem to also loose almost all stagefright in the late evening, when we see four or five at a time come around dancing, darting, and bellying up to drink. Beautiful handiwork of the Creator, these hummers are! The stunning contrast in color from the ruby ring around the male neck to their shimmering green coat and white belly, and then the more constant shiny green-grey the females sport.

We have already been blessed with fresh herbs from the garden to season our meat and potatoes with. My problem is using too much at any one time due to my exploding enthusiasm in using what nature provides rather than what Kroger provides (and due in part also to a general lack of common sense).

gloria sit Deo!

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