"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

Hello Friends!

Friends, Romans, countrymen...y'all. Foodies, gardeners, artists and collectors - let's gather together to share and possibly learn a thing or two in the mix.

Donna Baker

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Starlings


The north winds are howling today.  I finally got the leaf and limb cleanup crew to come today and I doubt they'll come due to this blow.  It is literally howling.  Wouldn't you know.

The starlings have arrived and are fighting over the suet cakes.  Must be their favorite meal. Though their vocalizations are not as pretty as a songbird's call, I don't mind theirs'.


I took these pictures last year at the farm.  They were everywhere.  It is something to see how they lift off at the same time; a rare treat to see their murmurations.


Spring is coming, though I can't tell today.  The bulbs are finally peeking up through the earth.  I had to water, since the ground was so dry.  The ground needs rain, but I didn't say that.


28 comments:

  1. We had a million Starlings yesterday, well maybe not quite a million, but black feathers seemed to gather as far as the eye could see.
    Warm for us today, rain and mists.
    Yay for the bulbs peeking :)
    Hugs,
    ~Jo

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    1. It's a treat to see wildlife. It is supposed to be 84 Saturday! And, the grounds crew came and is working in the wind. And the best part, they are only charging me $80. I couldn't believe that.

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  2. The starlings drove my friend crazy, they love to sit in her bamboo trees, to the point that the entire side of her house stunk of bird poo! I helped her cut down all the bamboo because it became unbearable. Of course, I have a soft spot in my heart for those birds, after raising Esther, my little starling.

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    1. I love Esther too, in my heart. I have heard they shoot them in AR, though it should be illegal. Egrets do that in OK and leave terrible messes. It is definitely against the law here to shoot them. They used fireworks going off at regular intervals to make them find greener pastures.

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  3. So much earlier than us!!BRRR..
    Look at all those birds Tippi:)

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    1. I would have loved to have been able to get even closer to them, but they kept startling. Startling starlings;) It is so cold today. In the 40's, but with that wind it felt like 20's.

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  4. At the old house, when the starlings came in spring, they would form a line and make a sweep across my yard, unearthing and eating grub after grub. They turned and went back. And on and on. Only later did I learn, they saved me from another year of Japanese beetles. I liked starlings.

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    1. I bet. For some reason, they are staying in the trees, except to fly down to the feeders. They are making a mess, but, oh well.

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  5. spring getting closer, what a crowd of pushy birds

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    1. Yes, they were actually fighting each other at the suet feeder. I'm going for fertilizer and Preen tomorrow, and hauling home some dirt. It is coming.

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  6. Donna, I liked seeing all those starling photographs. Murmuration is such a great word. We are expecting up to 10 inches of snow tomorrow morning. More nature to explore...with warm boots. xo

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    1. Since it doesn't happen too often there, it should be fun to go out in. Watching GMA this morning and doesn't look like many outside.

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  7. It's way too early to see flocking birds here. We do get flocks of starlings as other times of the year, also red-winged black birds. I find the starlings to be noisy and annoying, but I like the call of red-winged blackbirds - it's like a signal that the weather is finally warming up. -Jenn

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    1. Yes Jenn, I am always looking for signs of spring. At the farm it was wild onions and mayapples.

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  8. That is a huge number of starlings! We have them here all year around. I love seeing their murmurations. Sarah x

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    1. Me too Sarah. Such a wonder. Their aerial acrobatics remind me of fish when they school.

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  9. I don't like starlings anywhere near the house but their aerial displays, moving as one body over the fields, are wonderful to see.
    Bitterly cold here, but snowdrops bravely putting on a show!

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    1. Rosemary, I planted them for the first time last year, but I think I waited to late as they haven't peeked through the soil yet. I sure hope they do.

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  10. Oooooo Donna .... it's a bit like Alfred Hitchcock's ' The Birds ' !! haha !!
    We used to get a lot of starlings but they are few and far between lately.
    It's good to know that spring is on it's way isn't it ? There is now birdsong in the morning and little fresh green shoots are peeping through ! It won't be long before we are all out there, getting our hands dirty ! XXXX

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    1. And I can't wait Jacqueline. I'm going to the plant center today for peat and fertilizer, etc.

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  11. looks like the giant clouds of grackles we get.

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    1. I used to see red-wing blackbirds at the farm near water. I loved those, but after 30 years, I no longer see them nor the quail.

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  12. I found out two years ago that Starlings can be very responsive to human requests. I was burying one of our cats and on the phone wire above me was about a hundred of these birds so I raised my arms and said please give us privacy for five minutes. They flew off and returned later to sit in silence before flying away again.

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    1. That's amazing. I love birds. I love feeding them and watching their habits. I especially like to see the nosy little wrens flit about peeking into everything. I read once that Saint Francis of Assisi loved the crows best of all the animals.

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  13. Isn't that amazing. It's like a mobile bird city.

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  14. That looks amazing!!! So many Starlings you caught in those beautiful pictures!!! Thanks for sharing:)
    Jessi

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