Bird brained stories!

Sunday, May 22, 2005

A new family in town?

For over a week, I have heard Baltimore Orioles singing nearly non-stop in my yard. One evening, I watched two males, who appeared not to be fighting, carrying nesting material around. I also have seen at least one female. Hmm. Most years, I'll hear one singing briefly for a day or two from the tops of the trees, then they disappear, reappearing when the trumpet vine is in bloom to pierce the blossom and sip nectar. This new pattern was hopeful. We have a pair of nesting cardinals every year. Mourning doves. Robins. Sparrows and finches, the occasional blue jay. Those grackles. This would be such a welcome new neighbor, with the brilliant flash of orange as it flies around the yard.

I placed my oriole feeder out with grape jelly and orange slices. They've been there, I've seen them. I cut up a bunch of yarn into short lengths and stuffed it into a suet feeder. I sat back and listened. And watched.

This morning, when I got my coffee and looked out the window at my feeders, I was thrilled to see a female Oriole pulling out a length of yarn from the suet feeder. I watched her work at it, then fly up into our large flowering crab nearby. I don't know if that's where the construction is taking place, or if it was a stopping point along the way to the building site. I do know I'm very glad today is a day to work in my gardens, and I'll be watching to see what develops! If indeed they are nesting in my yard, my research has suggested that once the little ones hatch, they prefer mealworms to the sugars. Anyone know where I can buy gourmet style mealworms?

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