2019 Jan to Mar - Animal, Birds & Insects


Everyone has been showing their animal encounters in the wild… heck I see deer here everyday and everywhere… I don’t even have to leave the apartment… or bed…

That was just after the sun the other day cleared the mountains in the early morning… about 0830… and definitely one of the colder mornings this February… forget exactly how much but near -20C or lower… a bit. just about the morning after the snow… memory fails me… but we had more… and more coming… snow not deer… they never leave this was part of our local herd… about 12 females and two bucks… ha. all family I think…

EDIT: Should read… ‘That was the other day just after the sun cleared the mountains’

Left it the way it was when I read it this morning… never noticed that there was a keyboarding error… this thing often moves text if you hit some key or other… ha… usually while sound asleep!


It’s the same here. When I used to have my security camera running 24/7 out in the front yard, every night I could watch the deer as they entered or exited my front yard - depending upon which direction they were coming from. Like I mentioned in several posts, Donna and/or I could be sitting on the porch and they come waltzing right in. Other times they’re already here as one or both of us step outside… and they just give us a short glance and go back to foraging. It’s only when I spook them - by stupid things like hitting my foot with the storm door, miss the chair as I sit down (:grimacing:), things like that.

That’s a nice looking deer you have there. :smiley: Now if you can only train one of them to bring your morning coffee and newspaper. :laughing:


I saw this little guy on the news…so cute…


News: In a place where it never snows in 2018-19, wildlife have perfected the art of raiding bird feeders. One feeding resident, @Jim7 told how “Deer have made trails to the feeders here, coming as early as 6 a.m. to avoid the Critter Crowd.”


They have 3 paths so well packed down I’m thinking about having them paved! :rofl: And maybe put up a toll booth. :wink:



Here’s a pileated woodpecker at the base of the maple tree in front of my son’s bay window.
(Photo taken through a window that had lots and lots of little finger prints on it. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:)


The robins are back! Yesterday I heard two robins calling… couldn’t see them though. Early this morning I heard a robin in the trees up on the hill to my northwest. Just now (11:20 AM) I was listening to a robin in the trees behind the carriage house. I’m hoping to get a photo or two of them. Last year a flock of robins showed up at my son’s house - over two dozen - and I did get several photos of them. That also was in February. A little early for them being a sign of spring.

At the moment we have 8 gray squirrels, several cardinals, a few chickadees, about a dozen juncos, just a handful of titmice, a few chipping sparrows (the rest must be hiding in the hedges here, behind my house and in those across the street), and a small flock of starlings that showed up until I stepped outside. There is a red-headed woodpecker that is calling from a tree directly across the street, but it hasn’t flown over to hit up the suet cakes yet.

The snow storm is about 90 miles/145 km away yet. They originally said 4 o’clock we should start getting the snow, but now they’ve changed it to 4:15 PM. Either way, the birds and squirrels are all staying here eating while they can. :smiley:


@Jim7, pardon me, but my ignorance is showing again!

Are you Robins the same as ours, Erithacus rubecula https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_robin? Ours are fiercely territorial and are only seen singly except when they pair for mating, never flocks of them. And Starlings: ours are Sturnus vulgaris https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_starling; what about yours? We have a woodpecker with a red head, Dendrocopos major, the Greater Spotted Woodpecker https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_spotted_woodpecker: like yours or not?

I’ll have to head off to the books or further into the internet for cardinals, chickadees, juncos, titmice and chipping sparrows.

We do have Gray Squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eastern_gray_squirrel, the descendants of imports from America. They brought squirrel pox with them, a disease which is often fatal to our native Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_squirrel. Don’t be fooled by the name: the Reds are much more attractive than their Gray cousins. The Grays here are seen as vermin while the Reds are a protected species.


No, these are the American robin. The American robin ( Turdus migratorius ) is a migratory songbird of the true thrush genus and Turdidae, the wider thrush family.
American robin


The head, bill and overall shape very similar to our male Blackbird (Turdus merula) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_blackbird.


:open_mouth: a sure sign of spring for us when we see robins…but they usually arrive here early May!


Because the robins have either been showing up a few months early or even some wintering over, now we look for the red-wing blackbird. And even last year they were 2 to 3 weeks early. Yeah… there’s nothing wrong with our climate… :roll_eyes: I think this year we’re putting the blue bird boxes up the last week in February instead of the middle of March. Now I have to rush making nesting platforms for the robins, the boxes for the blue birds, and then I can work on the other bird houses. I hope my granddaughters will be abe to paint fast enough. They’ve said they wanted to paint them and not just put up “plain old wood” as I’ve already been informed. :face_with_raised_eyebrow: I would have just left them bare wood or just wiped on some polyurethane. Got to go…


They are also one of our first “spring birds”…I have many many photos of them…

Have you tried Acrylic Craft Paint for the birdhouses, and then spray on protective sealant? Seems to work and much cheaper on the paint.


I have thought about that several times… even making some milk paint. But I was really hoping they either leave it as base wood or just wipe on some clear or tinted poly. But, noooo! Eva insisted she paint them the same colors as her markers. Dang, they’re bright! At least we have enough paint for two years’ worth of bird house building… or more… unless they want different colors next year or next time. :grimacing: One last thing… I don’t think my wife would have wanted us to use any sprays in the kitchen. That’s where she assembled it and painted it. I covered the kitchen table with a clear, 4-mil plastic sheet I cut off from a 30’/9.1 metre roll. Besides, I could always use some of the paint for some outdoor toy boxes or a table for their outdoor playhouse. I better stop here… I’m making my list of things to build for the girls longer the more I talk about it. :hushed:


There are some “neon acrylic paints” not sure if they would be “acceptable”…Milk paint is “stinky” and they probably wouldn’t use it???..a thought…I’ve used “chalk paint” also (you can make your own) but you have to cover with something - clear sealant or something for outside.



I pray there are more than just the one they found. I hope this isn’t the last of its kind. Still… I’m happy to see the “old ones” are still around.


The frog(s) in our garden pond have been busy… we’ve got spawn! (Since 15th February…)

Only one batch (so far) - which at least means that Dylan has left at least one male and one female frog alive!
I’m hoping that there’s more, but there’s been nothing since…

2019 - Feb 1st to March 31st - Weather Reports and Descriptions

This is one BIG bee!

And here is another very large bee that was introduced into Eastern North America and has so far spread west to Colorado - The Giant Resin Bee.


This link is to The Maryland Biodiversity Project for the Giant Resin Bee. On their homepage is a “ton of information” about many other species of insects as well.