Good morning on this beautiful Saturday! It’s a glorious, sunny morning, though definitely on the cool side. The roofs on the houses are covered with frost, but there is none on the ground. It’s our first touch of frost, which is quite amazing as well. Still, it isn’t much of a frost until it hits the ground. I was actually expecting the deck to be frosty, and therefore slippery, this morning, but it wasn’t. Several of you have asked to see my latest weird looking bird feeder, so here is a picture of it below.
I admit it doesn’t look like much, I made it rather quickly and intend on making another one that should look a little nicer. But the chickadees certainly enjoy using it. And yesterday I spotted our first red-breasted nuthatch of the season and his first trip was to this funny looking feeder. The birds don’t really care, it’s the seeds they want and the other birds don’t bother them at this feeder, only small birds can use it. So they’re happy and I’m happy. But I do want it to look a little better, this was an experiment.
Today through to Tuesday it’s supposed to be a bit warmer, and sunny, a nice little break before returning to regular autumn temps again. But it is late autumn and it feels like it with cool nights, and therefore mornings too, and warming up just a bit during the day. I wonder what it’s like down at the river? We have had close to 5 inches of rain over the past week, most of that would have run off into the lake, then into the river. That would raise the water level in the river substantially.
Sitting down at the river on these cooler autumn days is very relaxing however. Watching as the water flows quickly past. Ducks swimming and diving after those little fish and sometimes just lazily floating along like they are enjoying the scenery. And even sleeping in one of the quiet bays where there is no current to carry them away down the river. A few juncos rustling through the leaves looking for seeds to eat, getting ready for their trip flying to the south for the winter. They don’t go very far south usually, only far enough to ensure they will have adequate food, which is mostly seeds during the winter months and on migration.
They do enjoy eating insects too when they can find them. Flocks of chickadees and nuthatches have gotten together by now and through the remainder of fall and winter they will travel together looking for seeds or insects that have hidden behind the bark of trees for the winter. Plus these two species of birds deliberately hide insects in those locations during late summer and fall to help them out with food for the winter. Blue jays and gray jays will do the same thing.
Squirrels are busy cutting down pine and spruce cones which they hide in bunches all around their territory so they have easy access to food during the winter, especially during the coldest parts of winter. On warmer days they will still go and pick cones. But right now they are very busy digging through the leaves, pine needles and shrubs, looking for those cones they just cut down. If they spot you walking past they will run up the nearest tree and chatter loudly, upset for being disturbed and letting all the other squirrels in the area know that I am coming.
It’s a beautiful time to be walking along that river path which is covered with leaves this time of year and mushrooms dotting the landscape under those big pines. It’s a good idea to dress warm though, it can be cool walking the path now, but it’s fresh, the smell of autumn is in the air, it’s calm, it’s quiet with only the sounds of birds and other animals heard from time to time along the way. I can just envision it right now, it’s a beautiful autumn day. Have a wonderful Saturday everyone and God bless!
Steve and Muffin.
©2021 Steve McLeod.