Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Nature Notes: Birds and the Bees

I have so many bees in my yard that some people find it rather frightening.
I have discovered that they are much more interested in the plants than me and totally ignore me as long as I don't accidentally step on them.
Wasps and yellow jackets are another story and those I avoid like the plague.
It's interesting how fat and plumped out the American Robin looks in the bath and how long and slender in the grass.
I wish I could photograph the many birds that burrow into the perennial grasses but they are too thoroughly hidden there.
I did manage to shoot the catbird feasting on blackberries even with the porcelain berry vines (ampelopsis brevipedunculata) available for cover. The ampelopsis brevipedunculata is what the bees in the first shots are busy with.
As you can see below some of the blackberries are ripe enough to eat.
I'm not sure if the reason I can see more black in the male cardinal below is because he's wet, immature, or it's the time of year.
Some of my yarrow is beginning to flower but the heat isn't doing it any good.
The mourning dove are very shy and I try to photograph them way back from my bedroom door so they don't get scared.
When my purple coneflower (echinacea) begins to flower I know summer has arrived. The petals haven't turned purple yet but they will.
The chickadee is getting ready to dive into my front yard water bath which is much prettier than the deck pot liners I use but harder to shoot the birds from. The good thing about the pot liners is they are cheap and I throw them away when they degrade and are too hard to clean. I swap them out for different ones when worn out.
The brown thrasher is so wet that it's interesting to me to see the mix of colors in the feathers which aren't noticeable when dry.
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Nicole said...

Beautiful shots as usual. Such a variety, whoa!
Love that puffed up Robin :D
Can't believe your Blackberries are already ripe! In Hungary it will be at least another month, I think :)
I think that's the Cardinal's breeding plumage maybe?

Cezar and Léia said...

Do you take some charge in honey for the bees guesting at your home? :)
God bless you!

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful photos, Carver! I love all the shots of the birds bathing. Your blackberries are doing well. The birds will really love eating them.

??? said...

That's a great variety of birds :) I'm happy to hear about all the bees in your backyard, I've seen only a few so far (but I have planted flowers that are good bee pasture this year)

EG CameraGirl said...

Love seeing all your birds! Our blackberry bushes are only flowering so it will be a while before we see any berries.

Arija said...

Great crop of feathered friends and I hope you gobbled that first blackberry up there and then.

Dianne said...

your back yard is an absolute paradise!
I love all the bird photos, the mourning dove close-up is wonderful
I have a pair of them that hang out on the phone wires at the end of my driveway
all I have to do is peek out the window and they leave :)

Leora said...

A lovely series. I took photos of catbirds this week - maybe by next Nature Notes I will have time to post. I think the catbirds like my yard partly because of the berries - we've got raspberries coming in. And the strawberries are fading out.

I like your yarrow, too.

Rambling Woods said...

So happy to see that you have lots of bees, I am trying to get to that point here... Juvie cardinals have a black bill that gradually turns to black. This time of year many of the adults have worn feathers which will molt after they are done with their offspring....Michelle...