Garden Diary - December 2013

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Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Winter arrives with the solstice, 10 days away. So technically, I suppose, this is still the autumn season. Unfortunately, if anyone told this to the weather it wasn't convincing.

It's cold. And it has snowed.

I bought a bird feeder and some quality bird seed - all hulled so there's no litter down below after the birds have eaten the mostly sunflower with some peanuts and other seeds. First few days there were no visitors. Then the titmice, sparrow-sized gray birds with a little crest, came to visit. They were followed by dark gray snowbirds, juncoes. Ground feeders, they won't perch on the feeder. A couple of chipping sparrows, and a few goldfinches in their drab winter colors.

A downy woodpecker in his natty black and white feathers came too. I know it's a male because of the red patch on his head that's barely visible here.

Much larger is this red bellied woodpecker. I know, you're thinking that's a misnomer, must be a red headed woodpecker. Apparently there's a little red patch somewhere on his belly. Females have a much more noticeable red patch on their nape. And males, like this one, have a red cap as well as red nape.

Domino has become a most avid birdwatcher. His tail flicks back and forth as he stares, so very intently, at the activity outside the kitchen window. The birds ignore him.

"Enough of this." he decides. "I'll snuggle down under the stove where it's nice and warm. The birds can stay outside in the cold. I wasn't really all that interested anyhow."

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