May’s journal focuses on activity in and around backyard feeders one afternoon on the north end of the neighborhood. We were invited over to see Rose-breasted Grosbeaks who had been showing up to recharge on good food in a wonderful wooded setting before continuing on their migration. For one hour we sat quietly with our friends and watched. This is some of what we saw.
If you live inside the city limits, Trees Atlanta will give you up to 3 free trees for your front yard and even plant them for you! It’s part of Trees Atlanta’s NeighborWoods program. Check it out and sign up for your trees at www.treesatlanta.org/freeyardtree. These are all wonderful shade trees free for the asking! Now how can you beat that?
While you are on their site, please consider signing Trees Atlanta’s Canopy Alliance Pledge (www.treesatlanta.org/pledge). These signatures will show Atlanta’s policy makers and influencers your support for protecting our urban canopy! It only takes a minute, costs nothing and will really help.
Another piece of good news is shown in the photo to the left. It’s a picture of a tree-save fence around a wonderful White Oak on Darlington Rd. We estimate the Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) between 36 and 42 inches, making the estimated age about 100 years!
The owners were very careful to make sure that the new house will be situated to save this tree. Given the recent spate of clear cutting, it’s a very encouraging sight.
Not only the tree is being saved, but so are the countless birds and critters that depend on it. Photos below show some glamour shots as well as birds enjoying this magnificent tree. Thanks to the owners, and welcome to Peachtree Park!
Future posts will report on the neighborhood’s efforts to significantly improve tree preservation. In the meantime, you can add to our canopy and increase your property value with free Trees Atlanta trees.
January was an unseasonably warm month. Lots of bird activity with many of the usual suspects and one unexpected rare appearance by a Wilson’s Warbler (see our recent January 14 post). In addition to the photos below we had visits from a Great Blue Heron and a Red-tailed Hawk. The Northern Flickers in the photo below were engaged in a territorial fencing display, which we have seen one other time.
October’s journal is in two parts: photos from the neighborhood, followed by photos of wildlife from Jekyll just after hurricane Matthew.
We’ve been seeing Monarchs in our yard all month. One stayed and visited flowers for most of one afternoon. This Monarch was so pristine we speculated that perhaps it had just morphed out. There were many Monarchs on Jekyll as well, which was most encouraging.
We arrived on Jekyll on October 12, two days after the island was re-opened and five days after hurricane Matthew hit. While the island sustained a fair amount of damage, things were in better shape than we had feared. And we were encouraged that wildlife seemed to have made it through. Also, very glad to see that the magnificent Live Oak in Brunswick known as Lover’s Oak, which is said to be over 900 years old, made it through as well.
References and Additional Information
The Peachtree Park Nature Trail is a gem tucked in along the southeast boundary of the neighborhood. When you walk this path, have you considered how much wildlife this little spot of land supports?
As a part of Ryan Tuemler’s Eagle Scout merit badge, he built four bluebird-size houses and installed them along the trail. Here’s the cool part: three of Ryan’s four houses have birds nesting in them right now! The one closest to the community garden appears to still be waiting on occupants. Thanks Ryan! Hope things are well at West Point and wish you were here to see what you’ve done.
Birdhouse #2 has Eastern Bluebirds. This video shows they are hard at work feeding their chicks.
Take a stroll down the Nature Trail and tell us which bird you think is in house #1 and house #3. Please read our notes on etiquette and take care not to disturb the hard-working parents.
While we were checking out the birdhouses yesterday, we noticed a pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers who have built their own nest in the top of a snag near house #3. So awesome to see in our neighborhood!
Thanks to all the volunteers who helped establish and are maintaining this trail!
Juts a few things to remember when watching nesters:
- Keep a safe distance from the birdhouse: 20 – 30 feet is good – you can see a lot from this respectful distance.
- Be patient. Bird parents are especially skittish when they’ve got babies. But if you’re quiet and still, they will think you’re safe and continue feeding.
- Don’t go up to the birdhouse and certainly don’t touch it.
- Don’t check the house early in the morning. Also, avoid the nest at dusk and at night.
- If you think you’ve disturbed the birds, then back up a little and give them some more room.
Nesting season is off to a great start! Let us know who you have nesting in your yard.