Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Wildlife Wednesday February 2016

It's Wildlife Wednesday hosted by Tina at "My Gardener Says..." on the first Wednesday of each month providing an opportunity to share wildlife from our gardens.  With our mild winter this year  we've had visitors like this Gulf Fritillary butterfly posing on faded Gomphrena 'Fireworks' for a striking color combination.

Otherwise, it's been another slow month for wildlife.  I actually spent some time trying to photo a Skink which is the very definition of an exercise in futility.  Aggie Horticulture has some photos on their website if you're interested.  Skinks are beneficial in the garden since their favorite food source is grasshoppers.  It seems we have several but they are so fast I might be seeing the same one in different places!

Just like last month I've returned to the archives for more bird antics.

There's a backstory on how it went down that day.   Lesser Goldfinches, two look like young chicks, having a bath in the saucer when a Black Crested Titmouse shows up to the party.  Stern looks are exchanged.

Things get a bit crowded.  Surprised looks follow.

Some objections are raised.  Feathers fly.  But not the Titmouse.

Black Crested Titmouse exits the pool, shaking butt as it leaves.

"Hey, wait a minute!"

Now we have a staring contest underway.  You lookin' at me?

Some trash talkin'

"We'll just finish up here"

Maybe there's enough room after all

Almost done here.  What we we arguing about?

Okay, I'm out...

I spent a nice day earlier this week cutting back Inland Sea Oats which were looking a bit tatty and never seem to mind a late freeze.  A doe showed up looking for an free lunch in the compost pile.  Since deer don't typically go for grasses, I cut a few Ruellia stalks and added them to the pile for which she rewarded me with a smile.  It's tough for deer out there right now with so many winter dormant plants.

That's the roundup of wildlife in my garden for this month.  Tina has a post on the value of native bees in the garden.  You'll want to check out how to attract native bees to your garden.  I definitely will give her bee townhouse a try.


  1. Great shot of the Gulf Frittilary. We have plenty of those in summer, but none of those cute little Lesser Goldfinches. For some reason the video reminds me of a Three Stooges episode.

  2. How fun with all the birds! I love how expressive thety can be.

  3. You got great shots of the bird bath squabbles. For the most part, the birds in my garden are happy to share the fountain (as opposed to the feeder). The exception is the scrub jays which share with no one! The finches in my yard are currently house hunting - I shooed away a pair of lesser goldfinches trying to set up a nest behind the light near the back door but I won't win that war. Meanwhile, the house finches seem to be considering the eaves over the south side patio.

  4. I love your bird shots! That reminds me to let you know that the cedar waxwings were out of the barn when I got home from WFSC, which was a relief after they stayed the day before flying back and forth and couldn't figure out how to fly out the way they came in. Silly birds!

  5. I've also seen Gulf Frittilaries around, though flying too fast for me to capture with the camera--good shot that. I loved the birds shots and accompanying commentary! So funny and a great way for me to wake up this sunny day! Amazing that all those little feathered things could fit into the plant saucer and get along well, at that! Interesting about your skink--I can imagine that it would be difficult to photograph. Thanks for joining in--what a fun post.

  6. So much fun going on at your place! The bird saga is hilarious - I love the stare downs which seem to be pretty much a complete bluff considering all the close quarters bathing that follows.

    I have some of the awful-no-good-at-all invasive ruellia growing out where the deer play and they obligingly keep it chomped down all year 'round. I guess it must be very tasty to them. If I thought they'd eat it to death I'd happily let a few in to the fenced area to browse the rest out of existence. If only it worked that way...

    Looking forward to seeing your take on the bee hotel - your garden adornments are so clever! Happy WW!

  7. I enjoyed the story of the finches and the titmouse. I love to see them interacting and talking to each other. We have Goldfinches and Tufted Titmouses here during the winter. So cute!

  8. Shirley, great post, this really made me smile this morning, I love the sequence of shots and video, bird interaction is so funny to watch. A surprise to see an early Butterfly, he is a handsome fellow, we haven't seen any yet. Good luck with the Skink shots, although that sounds a very absorbing creature to photograph.

  9. I so enjoyed the finches and black crested titmouse so much! Those hate stares were marvellous!

  10. Stunning color combination with the butterfly and flower. Your bird antic story and images are adorable!

  11. Beautiful shot of the fritillary! The goldfinches and titmouse are adorable and looked to really be enjoying their baths, bickering aside.

    (I inadvertently deleted your original comment so I'm posting it this way, my apologies. I so appreciate your comment)


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