Thursday, May 03, 2007

Our Wild Life

A flash of red way up high in a tree. Hearing “screeeeee” in the morning. A red-wing blackbird has taken over our neighborhood. Sitting patiently on the back porch with my camera at ready, I’ve yet to get a good shot of him. He swoops past so fast, then alights on a waving tule stalk. By the time the button is pressed he is gone. (I don't know if you can see the red circle in the photo.)

I’m sure there is a nest in the tules in the ditch behind the house. I would be able see the nest if I were taller (maybe seven feet tall). When I walk close to the ditch he darts to a nearby light stand, and then to bushes near the ditch and keeps his eye on me. The nests are cups of vegetation, and are either built in shrubs or attached to marsh grass. Some nest predators include other birds, snakes, and the raccoon. We have raccoons around here and yesterday I saw a snake slithering across our driveway towards the ditch. Oh dear.

The picture is from A Field Guide to Western Birds, Roger Tory Peterson, Third Edition

Our bird, the Bicolored Blackbird, is unique to central California and has solid red epaulets without the yellow border seen in most male Red-wings. He seems to be defending a very large area. I’ve read that these male birds are polygynous and often have up to 10 mates.

A White Cat Crossed My Path

I reported on a black cat crossing my path in mid-February. That was Blackie. In April our white cat, Feather, decided he needed exercise too. He now walks along almost every time we go. Sometimes both Blackie and Feather walk with us. I love the companionship.

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Blogger Vicky aka stichr said...

holey swiss cheese batwoman, look at that tail...on the cat! is that all fluff?

10:00 AM  
Blogger Christine Thresh said...

Yes, that tail is all fluff. He was named Feather Duster when he first arrived here (a skinny, gaunt, 6-month-old stray)with a huge tail that looked just like an old-fashioned turkey feather duster.
He is a very long cat too.

10:19 AM  

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