It managed to get up to the low 50s today. The sun was bright and the winds were minimal. What a joy to be able to be outdoors for a couple hours and not be frozen half to death. We did start out cold, 28 degrees and a heavy frost. You can see the frost on the azaleas in the background, and if you look even further, you can see snow in the field on the other side of the trees across the street, in the picture of the hawk looking for breakfast this morning.
The cardinals, finches, and sparrows hid out in the thicker bushes until he left, as he has learned to dive bomb the camellia next to the feeders out front. He usually starts swooping the ground to get a sparrow or a junco. But, after about a half an hour, the little guys get brave and come back. With 13 feeders in one area, the Bird Restaurant is quite a popular spot. See the bright copper tray behind the feeders? It is a hanging birdbath. The first year I had one, I tried it as a feeder, but I soon discovered the moisture seems to do something with the seed – there is NO drainage – and the copper tray soon “rusted” into a mess of heavily corroded metal. I have no doubt it was probably pretty toxic and even the birds stopped eating out of it. I guess they figured it out, too.
Also, birds need to drink. Imagine that! So, every morning when it is real cold, I go out and flip the tray over and refill it with fresh water. I am barely back in the house before the little guys are in the water getting a drink. On slow days, they sit and peck at the ice. Nothing like making a body feel shamed, right? So, out I go with fresh water.
The littlest birds seem to prefer the tray to the bigger ground level feeder out back. Maybe because Spook likes to drink out of it, too? However, the larger birds, like Robins, prefer the ground level feeder.
The best shot I never got (the one that got away?) was of a pair of cardinals drinking out of the Buddha birdbath. Papa sat on the rim and watched while mama cardinal had a nice long drink. By the time I got the camera, well… you know – they were gone.
The boys spent a little time out in the sun, but napped back in their box. I opened the flap door to the cat’s box, but dropped it again as the sun went down. In spite of the warmth of the day, the boys still chose to spend much of it stretched out on their heating pad… I think they really love the bigger one where they don’t have to curl up on top of each other, tho they still do at night. They have slept that way for years.