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Thread: The thread for birds and birding

  1. #61

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Gurtholfin View Post
    We haven't seen too many hummers yet this year. Just one or two and not on a regular basis.

    Carter, you're about 10 miles from me. You have them yet?
    Oh, yeah, we've had 'em for about 4 weeks. Maybe longer. Although they did come on just like usual at the start but have since tapered off a bit. We think it might be the cold, wet weather, but hey, they still gotta eat, right? Maybe more.
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by gmann View Post
    a couple days go we seen a indigo bunting.
    Are you sure you didn't go to SCSU?

    I may have to try the grape jelly. Our old next door neighbor put out an Oriole feeder and we would see them around (a pair nested in our tree last year). No sight of hummingbirds yet at the feeder I put in the flowering crab tree.

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by aygwm2 View Post
    As for the blue eggs in a rhodie bush, this may or may not help: http://www.sialis.org/blueeggs.htm
    while the eggs do look a lot like that, we finally saw one of the birds sitting on the nest and it doesn't look like they are robins after all. hard to tell for sure.
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  4. #64
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by FreshFish View Post
    while the eggs do look a lot like that, we finally saw one of the birds sitting on the nest and it doesn't look like they are robins after all. hard to tell for sure.
    If you can get a picture of the parents, post it.

    I've had hummingbirds here for a while. Saw the first one back in March I think. When hummingbirds first show up use a 2:1 (water:sugar) mixture. They are going to be looking for the most bang for the buck. They wont come a lot at first but should hang out for longer when they do come. Then go to a 4:1 after that. I always make my own sugar water. Cheaper and no dyes or anything (everything I read online says don't add food coloring and dont buy the premade stuff, plain sugar water is best).
    Last edited by Proud2baLaker; 06-08-2013 at 06:12 AM. Reason: Fixed the ratio

  5. #65
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Proud2baLaker View Post
    I've had hummingbirds here for a while. Saw the first one back in March I think. When hummingbirds first show up use a 2:1 (sugar:water) mixture. They are going to be looking for the most bang for the buck. They wont come a lot at first but should hang out for longer when they do come. Then go to a 4:1 after that. I always make my own sugar water. Cheaper and no dyes or anything (everything I read online says don't add food coloring and dont buy the premade stuff, plain sugar water is best).
    Your ratios of 2:1 (sugar:water) and 4:1 (sugar:water) seem backwards. Is that for real? I've always used 4:1 (water:sugar... 4 cups of water/1 cup of sugar).
    Like you, I've never fed my hummers anything but clear water and granulated sugar. I bring the water to a boil, remove from heat, then stir in the sugar until fully dissolved. Have had lots of hummers here for years and they seem to like it.

    They crack me up. If I haven't gotten the feeders out yet in the spring and they arrive, there's one that will hover at my family room picture window in the early morning. He's just looks in like he's saying... 'hey buddy, I'm back. Where's the food?'

    I have 4 hummer feeders in all. One at the front kitchen window, 1 suction cupped to the rear family room window, and 2 at the rear deck railings. Those 2 hang on cast rods that are bolted to the rail posts. The deck is 8' off the ground and the feeders hang almost 6' above the deck (or 14' above ground), which is right about my eye level when I'm on the deck. I'm an early bird and spend a lot of time on the deck or in the gardens starting at 4:30 a.m. I have one hummer that has been very friendly the last 3 years. I'll be leaning on the deck railing early morning having a smoke, about 3 feet away from one of the feeders. I see him coming out of the corner of my eye across the yard. He flies right up to me at about 100 mph, then stops. He hovers about 2 feet in front of my face, then moves close to me about 6" away. He backs up and comes close again about three more times, then over to the feeder he goes. We're just saying good morning to each other.

    A bully hummer showed up last year and he's back again this year. And he's the tiniest hummer of the bunch. He won't let any other hummers near 'his feeders'. He'll be 200' feet away and when another hummer shows up, he'll fly over just to chase him away... then he doesn't even take a drink. LOL. It's fun watching the others try to out maneuver him. I've seen 2 team up together. They both fly over and the bully shows up to chase them off. One hummer keeps the bully busy getting chased around while the other drinks. Too funny.

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Carter View Post
    We have several pairs of orioles every spring, and we have great luck feeding them grape jelly. We use this feeder http://www.amazon.com/Droll-Yankees-...m_sbs_indust_1 and put about half of one of the larger jars of jelly in it. They really go nuts for it.
    Quote Originally Posted by gmann View Post
    Fwiw........we have a few bird feeders just outside our large windows in our sun room. We live in a semi rural area and have a two acre yard. We live in west central MN and we have a wide assortment of birds that frequent our feeders. I have never seen an oriole though. After reading your post I put out a bowl full of grape jelly. Within an hour we had 3 sets of orioles and they have been there since. It's like crack to them. Might have to invest in Smuckers.
    I'm liking this. I had Orioles nesting here for three years. Haven't seen them last year or this year. I know they're around because I heard his singing in the distance. I'm going to put out some grape jelly and see if they'll come for a visit.

  7. #67

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by FiveHole12 View Post
    Your ratios of 2:1 (sugar:water) and 4:1 (sugar:water) seem backwards. Is that for real? I've always used 4:1 (water:sugar... 4 cups of water/1 cup of sugar).
    Like you, I've never fed my hummers anything but clear water and granulated sugar. I bring the water to a boil, remove from heat, then stir in the sugar until fully dissolved. Have had lots of hummers here for years and they seem to like it.
    Yeah, after replacing all kinds of feeders over the last 20 years, I finally settled on hummer feeders that have the formula embossed inside the cover. It says 4 water to 1 sugar, and that's what we've always done. And that way, as my mind gets increasingly more feeble, I can't screw it up.
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    Cheer up, the worst is yet to come gmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldy_331 View Post
    Are you sure you didn't go to SCSU?
    .
    Positive. Should have used scene, my bad.

    I was posting via the iPhone last night. Between not proof reading my post and relying on auto correct which leads to all sorts of blunders.

    Saw you later.
    Last edited by gmann; 06-08-2013 at 12:01 AM.

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Carter View Post
    Yeah, after replacing all kinds of feeders over the last 20 years, I finally settled on hummer feeders that have the formula embossed inside the cover. It says 4 water to 1 sugar, and that's what we've always done. And that way, as my mind gets increasingly more feeble, I can't screw it up.
    haha... I know the feeling.

    For anyone interested... I used to get a trail of ants parading in and out of the hummingbird feeders. Ants would crawl inside the feeders and die. Had to change nectar often. Then I found these. Water moat ant guards work great... haven't had an ant in the feeders since.

  10. #70
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by FiveHole12 View Post
    Your ratios of 2:1 (sugar:water) and 4:1 (sugar:water) seem backwards. Is that for real? I've always used 4:1 (water:sugar... 4 cups of water/1 cup of sugar).
    Like you, I've never fed my hummers anything but clear water and granulated sugar. I bring the water to a boil, remove from heat, then stir in the sugar until fully dissolved. Have had lots of hummers here for years and they seem to like it.
    yes, water:sugar is was I meant. Typed that after a long day at work. Haha. And I do pretty much the same thing you do when I make mine. Typically do about a gallon at a time.

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    The bird nesting in our rhododendron did something really interesting yesterday. On the other side of the bush from the house is our vegetable garden. I was walking along the path, nearing the bush, when the bird flew down into the path about eight feet in front of me. It jogged along the path keeping about eight feet in front of me, as I walked through the garden.

    If one were to attribute human motivation, I'd be tempted to say that it was trying to lead me away from the nest by making itself appear to be easy prey.

    It has a gray body and gray wings, a black tail, and a black beak with the black extended from the beak between the eyes across the top of the head. It might be a thrush of some kind, based on a picture I saw whose link I forgot to bookmark.
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by FreshFish View Post

    If one were to attribute human motivation, I'd be tempted to say that it was trying to lead me away from the nest by making itself appear to be easy prey.

    I would say that you're spot on. Birds will do that.


    Now if it were a redwing blackbird, it would peck out your eyes...
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  13. #73
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by FreshFish View Post
    It has a gray body and gray wings, a black tail, and a black beak with the black extended from the beak between the eyes across the top of the head. It might be a thrush of some kind, based on a picture I saw whose link I forgot to bookmark.
    I have a feeling that it is a Gray Catbird.

    *******http://www.lilibirds.com/gallery2/d/917-4/gray_catbird+1.jpg********

    Eggs of the catbird are also blue in color. Gray_Catbird
    Last edited by aygwm2; 06-09-2013 at 10:10 AM.
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by aygwm2 View Post
    I have a feeling that it is a Gray Catbird.

    *******http://www.lilibirds.com/gallery2/d/917-4/gray_catbird+1.jpg********

    Eggs of the catbird are also blue in color. Gray_Catbird
    Definetly have to agree with this based on the description given.

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by aygwm2 View Post
    I have a feeling that it is a Gray Catbird.

    *******http://www.lilibirds.com/gallery2/d/917-4/gray_catbird+1.jpg********

    Eggs of the catbird are also blue in color. Gray_Catbird
    You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to aygwm2 again.

    I think so too. Funny, I went online to do a search this morning and found this: http://identify.whatbird.com/obj/557...y_Catbird.aspx

    Then I came here to post and you had nailed it already.

    Thanks!
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

    "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -- Benjamin Franklin

    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    The sources say that you can tell a catbird by its call. Sounds just like a cat except you can tell it's a bird.

    The eggs have hatched. Saw a nice vignette this morning. The [presumably] male bird flies to the edge of the nest and puts food in the female's mouth, which she then transfers to the young under her.


    Separately, saw a yellow finch this evening. They flit around but I only see them infrequently.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

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    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

    "People generally are most impatient with those flaws in others about which they are most ashamed of in themselves." - folk wisdom

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    I am a bit frustrated. I put out mealworms trying to attract new birds. Nothing really seemed to go after them. They finally did disappear though I dont think it was anything new taking them. I did have them mixed in with sunflower and wonder if that affected things. Now I have them out alone in a tray. Hopefully I get something new with them. I am still trying to decide if I want to put out grape jelly for orioles. I am still trying to get species #30 for the year. I have been stuck on #29 for a while now.

    I wish I could get a picture of it, but I have a terrible camera so I will just describe it. I have what I refer to as a vulture cardinal. Haha. He is a normal looking cardinal except he has no feathers on his head at all. I am under the impression that it may be a juvenile who is molting but I have seen him for a few weeks now and there is no difference in head feathers...or lack thereof. He seems to be in good health, flying around ok and eating plenty of seed. Just kind of funny looking, though when he gets wet in the rain its more creepy looking.

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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Proud2baLaker View Post
    I wish I could get a picture of it, but I have a terrible camera so I will just describe it. I have what I refer to as a vulture cardinal. Haha. He is a normal looking cardinal except he has no feathers on his head at all. I am under the impression that it may be a juvenile who is molting but I have seen him for a few weeks now and there is no difference in head feathers...or lack thereof. He seems to be in good health, flying around ok and eating plenty of seed. Just kind of funny looking, though when he gets wet in the rain its more creepy looking.
    Could it be an immature Summer Tanager? They have no tuft on their head, their coloring is red, and coloring varies when molting. They are within your range in Southern Illinois.

    Immature
    *******http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/PHOTO/LARGE/4542177704_551cba14df_o_RolandoChavez_AABEdit.jpg********

    Male
    *******http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/PHOTO/LARGE/5799524679_cc76e7a347_o_reddirtpics_AABEdit.jpg********

    Female
    *******http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/PHOTO/LARGE/summer_tanager_aliiyoob.jpg********
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by aygwm2 View Post
    Could it be an immature Summer Tanager? They have no tuft on their head, their coloring is red, and coloring varies when molting. They are within your range in Southern Illinois.

    Immature
    *******http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/PHOTO/LARGE/4542177704_551cba14df_o_RolandoChavez_AABEdit.jpg********

    Male
    *******http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/PHOTO/LARGE/5799524679_cc76e7a347_o_reddirtpics_AABEdit.jpg********

    Female
    *******http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/PHOTO/LARGE/summer_tanager_aliiyoob.jpg********
    No. Its definetly (100% certain) a cardinal. When I say no feathers, I mean from like the neck up, not just the absence of a crest.

    Check out this link: http://www.hiltonpond.org/ThisWeek030701.html if you go down towards the bottom (just above postscript #4) that is what my cardinal looks like. Sounds like he may have a mite that is causing it.
    Last edited by Proud2baLaker; 06-19-2013 at 12:17 PM.

  20. #80
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    Re: The thread for birds and birding

    Quote Originally Posted by Proud2baLaker View Post
    No. Its definetly (100% certain) a cardinal. When I say no feathers, I mean from like the neck up, not just the absence of a crest.

    Check out this link: http://www.hiltonpond.org/ThisWeek030701.html if you go down towards the bottom (just above postscript #4) that is what my cardinal looks like. Sounds like he may have a mite that is causing it.
    Interesting.

    Is the Summer Tanager a species you would see in your part of Illinois?
    NMU Hockey Since 1976 ...there at the beginning.

    Bill Crawford, LSSU radio announcer, on NMU hockey: "This is their MO right to the tee: get out shot, get out played, keep hangin' in there, just rope-a-dope it in your own zone, get it up the ice, bang it in and win the game."

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