Wednesday, May 8, 2013

El Presidio Friends

Northern Cardinal
 I began planting the plants.  And then I began feeding the birds.  I discovered all the tricks to get them to our home. Water. Seed. Fruit. Nuts. Nectar. Feeders.  It's the secret to attracting incredible birds.

An angry Northern Mockingbird
 Our yard in Midtown Tucson has come alive over the past year as regular birds visit while new ones stop by.
Yellow Warbler
I woke up early one morning and heard the unmistakable call of the Yellow Warbler in our Mesquite tree.  I hadn't thought it possible and yet, there he was!  Magnificent!
I've placed dead wood branches behind the fence where I believe several Northern Cardinals are nesting!
Curve-billed Thrasher
At the dawn and dusk of El Presidio, the Curve-billed Thrasher jets around quickly on the edges of the garden.
A Verdin stops by for a quick sip from the hummingbird feeder.
The female Anna's Hummingbird counters the feeder opposite to that of the Verdin.
White-winged Dove-they make a mess!!!
As the Mourning Dove population decreases, the White-wing Dove populations increase.
Great-tailed Grackle
Great-tail grackles fly into our old Live Oaks.
                                       Hummingbirds nest. And watch guard over their babies.
Female Anna's Hummingbird nesting in our Live Oaks
My parents give me a snowman sunflower feeder to attract the Northern Cardinal.  When one comes, I jump for joy.  When they stay to nest, I'm honored.
House sparrows cover tree branches like a cloud of hershey kisses.
 House finches sound off one by one as they wait for me in the morning to fill their feeders. Sometimes dropping down impatiently to grab that first morning seed.
 A Northern Mockingbird takes a quick sip from the nasty bird bathe.  Instead of leaving like he did in years past, he stays with a partner and irritates the visiting Red-tail Hawks.
 Mourning doves bend branches and look inside my house.
I become frustrated that everyone has Lesser Goldfinches in their yards.....but me.  I buy a thistle feeder and two days later, Lesser Goldfinches enter El Presidio grounds for the first time.
This year a Common Raven flew over our house.  It was early morning and made me smile.  Yet another bird!
Each day is a new one.  I live in a nasty neighborhood that has nothing around it.  When I made an oasis, the birds began to make our place home.  Our running water fountain is a quick drink for many of our birds. Hummingbirds zip up and down catching bugs.
And when there aren't any birds around?  We know Mr. Cooper is in the hood!  It just proves that any place can become a refuge.  Create it and they will come!
For more fun, check Stewart M's Wild Bird Wednesday featuring birds from all over the world.  More to come.....


  1. i like the oasis you've created for them!

  2. Qué pájaros más bonitos. Pero lo que daría por fotografiar al Cardenal. Es una preciosidad de ave.. Me encanta.. Un saludillo..

  3. What a wonderful variety of birds you have attracted to your garden Chris! They are all beautiful as are the photos. No matter how many times I see the Northern Cardinals over there I am always stunned by their vivid colour. The Yellow Warbler is gorgeous too and I loved the pretty little Verdin, that is a bird I have never seen on other blogs. As for the final Hummingbird, what a beauty, a little jewel!

  4. Beautiful and patient pics as usual. I know such shots take some moments out of regular business in life. Are mornings the best time ?

    BTW, I meant to get back to you on the Arizona visit question, I've spent so much money on fuel, not sure if I'll make it now. But I do have a 1969 VW Beetle which gets excellent mileage, but older air cooled VWs do terrible in Desert heat. I did want to record some Saguaro open space anomlaies out west of Gila Bend, and other plants which defy reasons for being there. I did publish some photos and storyline however of Santa Rosa Mountains lower forest tree line which no one has ever documented and photographed before. Glad i did since deterioration will all but erase these things eventually.

    You don't follow the Earth Internet anymore, but here is where I published those photos. Some things like the Utah Serviceberry were a real surprise.

    Plant Forensics in Discovering a Climate's Ancient Past


  5. Hey there:) Right now I am cleaning up the blogger thing as reader is going away. I kept one of your blogs just in case this switch over in July happens, I won't lose you. So we shall see how it all goes. Google+ is where I'm trying to get everything organized. When someone posts, I'll get the notification.

    Bummer about the gas costs. I hope you can make it. I'd love to meet up with you for some hikes and plant talk. And of course, our Mexican restaurants are some of the best....:)

  6. Word has gotten out about your garden. That's a great variety of birds. Love all the different colors and sizes!

  7. You have a gorgeous group of birds there, thanks for sharing them with us.

  8. It'a amazing how much wildlife depends on the habitats we create for them. No action is too small. You have so many birds that we don't have here. I've never seen many of the birds you enjoy every day but I do see sparrows, cardinals, hummers, and gold/house finches all the time.

  9. Great post on yard birds. I have recorded 33 species from my yard. Some are just fly-overs, but still seen from my yard. The addition of a water feature really made a big difference and you have definitely proved that yourself!

  10. The a great collection of garden birds - my efforts in the same field are largely ignored! Maybe my birds are camera shy!

    Cheers and thanks for linking to WBW.

    Stewart M - Melbourne

  11. Wonderful to see how all your hard work at the Gardens has paid off Chris. You are attracting such a wonderful variety of birds - some of them are so colourful and I just adore the hummingbirds :)

  12. Gorgeous birds. I love the colour of the cardinal.

  13. Wow, Chris, what a splendid variety of bird you have attracted in you own little oasis! How cool that the Goldfinches showed up in just 2 days! You can always count on a hawk to break up the party! (at least they are cool to observe)

  14. Every little action pays off! So many varieties in your garden! Congratulations. If everyone could take this as an example and work on his own garden to attract life.

  15. What a great variety you're getting!
    Nice work on planning for it to happen.
    Also, wonderful photos of your visitors!

  16. Lovely birds in Your photos!

  17. That hummingbird is really cool. You have a great blog, I will join your follower list.

  18. I can't tell you how much I enjoy your little birds Chris. I was inspired today and actually went out n got a couple of feeders for the small birds that I hear in the trees early morning, now I just have to wait and watch. It was so horrible, I went into the pet shop to get the seed, I never go in there..they had so many small birds in cages, it was so awful I had to get out quickly, you would have hated it.

  19. You've got a marvelous collection of birds going there Chris! Your mockingbird look like a juvenile with those spots on its breast.

  20. Oh, and I love that line about the house sparrow looking like a cloud of Hershey kisses!


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