If you can, put out a water bowl for neighborhood animals. With temperatures expected in the hundreds for the rest of the week here in Kansas, everyone needs to stay hydrated. I’ve even been hearing about many hawks and owls around the area visiting sprinklers and bird baths to keep cool.
Now that we have the feeders up, our list of backyard visitors is incredible. Click on pictures to enlarge.
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Because I can. Click on pictures to enlarge.
It’s great to see everyone visiting the bird bath these days. I’ve got to figure out a cordless way to keep the water from freezing. Perhaps a solar-powered heater is in order. Click on pictures to enlarge.
There is an excitement in the air this time of year. I love these cold mornings when the sun is bright and there is a bit of wind. There is something really neat about that little bit of lens flare in some of the early morning pictures, this shiny burst of energy. Click on pictures to enlarge.
Wintering sparrows are getting here in big numbers. The Wakarusa Wetlands have been very active over the last few weeks. I’ve been seeing song sparrows, white-throated sparrows, white-crowned sparrows, and more. I’m sure the juncos are right around the corner. Click on pictures to enlarge.
It’s been pretty dry lately, so there are not a lot of puddles or other places with standing water. If you have a bird bath, it’s a good idea to keep it clean and filled up right now. The birds will thank you. Click on pictures to enlarge.
Baby birds are everywhere right now. Watch out for them. If you find a baby bird, do not assume it needs rescuing. Every year, good intentions separate a great deal of healthy babies from their parents. More often than not, the baby’s parents are nearby and have been feeding her/him. Cornell has some great info on what to do and what not to do.
Operation Wildlife advises if you find a baby bird and he or she is hopping, has most of his or her feathers, and has a short tail, the baby is a fledgling still learning to fly. His or her parents are nearby watching, feeding, and socializing the baby. I know it can be hard to resist getting involved. They look so vulnerable, but they need to be left alone so their parents can take care of them. If you are not sure if a baby needs help, call your local wildlife rehab. They will be happy to tell you. This is Operation Wildlife’s busiest time of the year. Donate or volunteer if you can. Join their Facebook page.
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If I could, I would walk the wetlands every morning. There is something magical about spending a couple of hours just wandering around, listening to the sounds, and watching all the activity. I like to think that those who think destroying the wetlands for a highway is in any way a good idea would change their minds if they just spent some time there. If you’re on Facebook, I encourage you to become a fan of the Wetlands Preservation Organization. Click on pictures to enlarge.