Peanuts! Jays, Nuthatches, chickadees, woodpeckers and more love peanuts. Shelled or whole, they’re a special treat packed with nutritional value for feathered friends – which makes them a great choice for winter feeding. Birds won’t mind them at all in summer though!
This fun wreath peanut feeder features a mod design resembling an old slinky. In powder coat metal, it won’t rust and squirrels can’t chew through it either. There’s a trick to filling this feeder because it takes two hands, so here’s a quick tip: Sit down, and brace the feeder between your legs. This allows for the two-handed action required for pouring them from the bag, otherwise peanuts end up all over the floor. Been there, and done that!
The cool thing about the wreath, or coil design is the options it affords for your birds. In summer, fruit is a perfect choice to attract migratory birds. Apple, pear, or orange slices, and even grapes are wonderful choices for cat birds, orioles, tanagers, woodpeckers and others.
Early spring is absolutely the best time for offering nesting materials too… and so simple with this peanut bird feeder! Bright cotton yarns, decorative mosses, feathers, and even pet hair are a few favorites that will encourage nest building around the yard. Just fill the wreath, pull some materials through to get started, and hang it from a branch where birds will see it. Don’t pack materials too tightly though. Should rain saturate them, you’ll want enough air to pass through enabling the materials to dry fairly quickly.
Even when using as a peanut feeder, you can still “mix it up” by adding suet balls or suet chunks in with peanuts. Birds will love it, and they’ll be back for more!
By the way, this photo was taken in our backyard, so when it shows up other places… please remember you saw it here first. This is how we ship them, assembled, filled and ready to go, with extra peanuts too!
On this Memorial day, we’d like to give thanks to those who served, and especially those who gave their lives for our freedom. It’s not something we think about, taken for granted, our freedom is beyond precious, beyond what we could ever imagine America would be without it.
And even to the four-legged heroes of war, we say thank you for giving your lives in the name of freedom. Here’s a few good pics and posts floating around the web this weekend, in honor of Memorial Day.
And a quote from a friend, Jeff Waldman: “When you cringe at the political or religious ideologies of others, and when you get up on the soapbox to espouse yours, remember those who gave their lives to give you the freedom to do so.
And one more, which may seem corny at first, but worth the read:
Her hair was up in a pony tail,
Her favorite dress tied with a bow.
Today was Daddy’s Day at school,
And she couldn’t wait to go.
But her mommy tried to tell her,
That she probably should stay home.
Why the kids might not understand,
If she went to school alone.
But she was not afraid;
She knew just what to say.
What to tell her classmates
Of why he wasn’t there today.
But still her mother worried,
For her to face this day alone.
And that was why once again,
She tried to keep her daughter home.
But the little girl went to school
Eager to tell them all.
About a dad she never sees
A dad who never calls.
There were daddies along the wall in back,
For everyone to meet.
Children squirming impatiently,
Anxious in their seats
One by one the teacher called
A student from the class.
To introduce their daddy,
As seconds slowly passed.
At last the teacher called her name,
Every child turned to stare.
Each of them was searching,
A man who wasn’t there.
‘Where’s her daddy at?’
She heard a boy call out.
‘She probably doesn’t have one,’
Another student dared to shout.
And from somewhere near the back,
She heard a daddy say,
‘Looks like another deadbeat dad,
Too busy to waste his day.’
The words did not offend her,
As she smiled up at her Mom.
And looked back at her teacher,
Who told her to go on.
And with hands behind her back,
Slowly she began to speak.
And out from the mouth of a child,
Came words incredibly unique.
‘My Daddy couldn’t be here,
Because he lives so far away.
But I know he wishes he could be,
Since this is such a special day.
And though you cannot meet him,
I wanted you to know.
All about my daddy,
And how much he loves me so.
He loved to tell me stories
He taught me to ride my bike.
He surprised me with pink roses,
And taught me to fly a kite.
We used to share fudge sundaes,
And ice cream in a cone.
And though you cannot see him.
I’m not standing here alone.
‘Cause my daddy’s always with me,
Even though we are apart
I know because he told me,
He’ll forever be in my heart’
With that, her little hand reached up,
And lay across her chest.
Feeling her own heartbeat,
Beneath her favorite dress.
And from somewhere here in the crowd of dads,
Her mother stood in tears.
Proudly watching her daughter,
Who was wise beyond her years.
For she stood up for the love
Of a man not in her life.
Doing what was best for her,
Doing what was right.
And when she dropped her hand back down,
Staring straight into the crowd.
She finished with a voice so soft,
But its message clear and loud.
‘I love my daddy very much,
he’s my shining star.
And if he could, he’d be here,
But heaven’s just too far.
You see he is a soldier
And died just this past year
When a roadside bomb hit his convoy
And taught the world to fear. But sometimes when I close my eyes,
it’s like he never went away.’
And then she closed her eyes,
And saw him there that day.
And to her mothers amazement,
She witnessed with surprise.
A room full of daddies and children,
All starting to close their eyes.
Who knows what they saw before them,
Who knows what they felt inside.
Perhaps for merely a second,
They saw him at her side.
‘I know you’re with me Daddy,’
To the silence she called out.
And what happened next made believers,
Of those once filled with doubt.
Not one in that room could explain it,
For each of their eyes had been closed.
But there on the desk beside her,
Was a fragrant long-stemmed rose.
And a child was blessed, if only for a moment,
By the love of her shining star.
And given the gift of believing,
That heaven is never too far.
Forget the pesticides, they’re literally choking the planet, and with the mild winter we’ve had, you can count on an extremely buggy summer! Because the ground never underwent an extended hard freeze, every creepy-crawly, buzzing and flying pest will witness a bumper crop season! A real nuisance for those who love the outdoors, but it doesn’t have to be….
Birds eat bugs, and bats eat more bugs – by the thousands per night! Although fuzzy, brown bats may appear a little on the eerie side, they are one of the most misunderstood flying creatures of the planet. Actually considered mammals, bats are essential to our ecosystem. Critical, bio-diverse services performed not only include insect control, but pollination and seed dispersal as well. In just about any given habitat; cities, deserts, woodlands, grasslands, rain forests, and your backyard, bat houses provide roosting spots for these beneficial flying mammals. Mounted high on a pole (15 to 20 feet) or on the side of a structure, bat houses will entice permanent residence if habitat is suitable.
The Center for Biological Diversity has published some astonishing numbers as far as bats’ value to farmers. The major concern is the quick-spreading White Nose Syndrome disease which has decimated entire bat populations in the last few years. Emerging in the Northeast, the fatal disease has spread south and west, wiping out complete colonies of cave-dwelling bats.
“Nationwide the loss of bats could mean exploding populations of insects no longer kept in check by these furry, fly-by-night mammals. Scientists have estimated that by keeping insect pests at bay and reducing the need for pesticides, bats are worth $22 billion annually to American farmers. In Colorado, these savings could reach $430 million per year; in South Dakota, $1.1 billion.
While bats are dying at rates topping 90 percent in some areas, and some species could face extinction, the risk to western bats and farmers is too great to justify easing restrictions for discretionary cave uses like recreation.”
The Center is asking for everyone’s help in protecting western bats, and preventing the spread of the deadly fungus. Simply keeping caves closed (nature’s bat houses) to tourism is a simple step in protecting bats and thwarting the war waged against their extinction.
Please take one minute and sign a letter to the U.S. Forest Service, asking for responsible management by maintaining current laws to keep bat caves closed to tourism.
Spilled seed is a major attractant of rats and other unwanted guests, in rural and especially in urban areas. The first reaction is usually: “Oh no, I have to stop feeding the birds now.” Not true!
There are some fairly simple methods to stopping the madness. One is to use seed catchers or seed trays which prevent spilled seed in the first place. The large platform area of some seed trays will attract new birds who have never used the feeder.
Another way to avoid these unwanted guests while still feeding your birds is to feed a high quality seed. Less expensive seed mixes contain fillers like millet, and finely cracked corn. Birds will continually toss these seeds out in search of the good stuff. So why not just feed the good stuff to start with? Black Oil Sunflower is a great basic seed preferred by many species. An even better choice is the Sunflower Hearts or Meats. There’s absolutely no waste, no shells, no mess. It does cost more, but again… there’s no waste, so it’s almost a wash. Nothing wasted on the ground for scouring rats, opossums, or raccoons, because all of the seed is consumed by your avian amigos!
Suet is another good choice because there’s no waste, no mess. Specialty mixes (doughs) are even meant for summer feeding. Some of the more common, or fat-based suet formulas may sour and turn rancid in summer’s extreme temperatures. But the heat will not affect suet doughs…. and both resident and migratory birds devour this stuff!
Below is a real note from one of our repeat customers, just yesterday. She phoned with some questions and had planned to purchase two seed trays. After speaking with her, the plans changed: (proof positive the above content holds some weight)
“thanks for chatting with me yesterday about seed catchers for my bird feeders. I am going to hold off on buying and change the birdseed instead to shelled sunflower nuts. I did go look outside and indeed there is a lot of millet on the ground, along with sunflower shells. I’m hoping this will work, if not I will order the seed catchers!
By the way, the seed catcher shown above is adjustable. It fits just about any feeder and comes in two diameters; 16 and 30-inch. The larger “SeedHoop” may even be pole mounted by creating a slit in the center of the tray. They’re versatile, durable, and best of all… they work!
Tragedy Focuses Efforts on Legislation
Kenneth Newman, a 33-year veterinarian and author of Meet Me at the Rainbow Bridge (www.meetmeattherainbowbridge.com), has proposed a law that answers his question. Gracie’s Law recognizes the emotional bond between pet and owner by entitling the owner of a pet killed through an act of malice or negligence to $25,000 in damages.
“It’s time we change the laws to more accurately reflect what pets mean to the average American,” says Newman.
Gracie’s Law would not supersede current laws, he says, which entitle owners to the property value of their pet. And it would not replace criminal prosecution for acts of malice. And owners who decline a recommended veterinarian procedure to save a pet would not be held accountable under the law, he says.
Newman’s dog Gracie was killed in April 2008 when a negligent driver backed up 25 yards without looking, crushing Newman and Gracie between two vehicles. The vet escaped with a broken leg; Gracie saved his life, he says.
“An attorney looked me in the eye and said that my dog was a piece of property, that I wasn’t entitled to anything for the dog, and that this was a simple broken-leg case,” he says.
In every state, he says, laws view pets as property. Owners are entitled to no more than replacement value; no law takes into consideration the loss of companionship, grief, or pain and suffering.
Newman says that doesn’t jibe with Americans’ attitude toward their pets. According to an American Animal Hospital Association survey, 90 percent of owners consider their animals part of the family. Other findings:
• 52 percent of Americans would rather be stranded on a deserted island with their pet than with another person.
• 83 percent call themselves “Mommy” or “Daddy” in reference to their pet.
• 59 percent celebrate their pet’s birthday.
Cases involving pet owners’ bonds are increasingly showing up in the courts, Newman points out:
• Matrimonial law: Attorneys have experienced a 23 percent increase in pet cases, according to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. This includes custody battles over pets, veterinarian bills and visitation rights. Harvard now has a course dedicated to pet law.
• The North Carolina Court of Appeals: While the plaintiff’s wrongful death lawsuit was denied, animal activists applaud a judge’s willingness to at least hear a case involving a Jack Russell terrier that died while undergoing tube feeding at a state facility.
• Texas justice: On Nov. 3, 2011, Fort Worth’s 2nd Court of Appeals ruled that value can be attached to the love of a dog. That overruled a 120-year-old Texas Supreme Court case, which held that plaintiffs can only recoup the market value of their pets.
• Largest award: In April, a Denver judge awarded Robin Lohre $65,000 for the death of her dog, Ruthie. Lohre had accused Posh Maids cleaning service of negligence for allowing the dog to get outside, where it was hit by a car. Newman notes this sets a new precedent for pet value, but that such uncapped awards may threaten affordable veterinary care.
To read Gracie’s Law and copy it to share, visit meetmeattherainbowbridge.com, click “image gallery” and scroll down.
About Kenneth Newman DVM
Kenneth Newman graduated from Purdue University with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 1979, and has since been a practicing vet. He experienced a badly broken leg and the death of his Labrador retriever Gracie due to the negligence of a driver in April 2008. Since then, he has proposed and advocated Gracie’s Law, which recognizes that pets are more than common property. Newman lives with his wife and their son, as well as several pets.
Here’s a new twist on an old favorite, the Mod Pod bird feeder produced a few years ago by Birdbrain. The bright colors and groovy designs really caught folks’ attention (and birds too), so it was a real bummer when they discontinued the line of feeders.
Enter this oval glass bird feeder that’s actually frost resistant ceramic. The improved design is an added bonus because it accommodates a variety of treats for your beaked buddies! Sort of like a Fly-Thru feeder, you can offer birdseed mixes, peanuts, fruit, suet, and crumbles & nuggets in this fun glass bird feeder. Change up the menu according to seasons – and who you’d like to attract. The open design also makes filling and cleaning a snap.
Shown in light lime, the Mod Oval Bird Feeder comes in cool Winter Blue as well. A high quality glass bird feeder that promises many seasons of use and enjoyment by birds and hosts too!
Happy Mother’s Day… to all the great Moms out there!
From the winged to the walking and everything in between, bird cams capture the miracle of life, and the harshness of Mother Nature as well. Two interesting live streams of hosted Bird Cams from The Cornell Lab of Ornithology and New York Sate Bluebird Society are listed below.
From The Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Live Red-tailed Hawk Nest. There’s also a cam for a Great Blue Heron Nest on their website.Also from a bird cam: “New high-speed videos of hummingbirds overturn nearly two centuries of conventional wisdom on how they drink. Researchers previously thought tube-like channels in their tongues sucked up fluid by capillary action, but the new analysis shows that their tongues actually trap nectar by curling around it.”
And From the New York State Bluebird Society, birds cams have been in place since 2002,
Recently a post on a Bluebird List-Serve mentioned an attack by Tree Swallows which was captured on the cam… I don’t have the heart to watch though. The actual date of attack is May 5, 2012. Here’s a link for the brave of heart.
Because of recent pricing decreases (amazing huh?) bird cams are available to the masses at very reasonable prices. The newest one is a Time-Lapse Cam from Wingscapes which sells for around $100 to $110. A one-time investment for the camera will bring hours, days, weeks, months and even years of glimpses into some of nature’s tiniest miracles. A fantastic educational tool for young and old alike, Bird Cams promise to bring joy and a touch of wonder to the viewer!
Here’s a real note (and our quick response) from an enthusiastic customer who’s just staring out with the backyard birding and gardening thing. This is the kind of stuff we love to see! Aside from a happy customer, another wildlife friendly habitat is being born.
“I just received my Solar hanging bird bath and ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh I LOVE it……I have it in my back yard…..I want to purchase another one for my front yard…..Do You have different styles and colors of solar hanging bird baths??? I am new to having a garden and bird feeding and baths….I love it!!! It is soooooooo peaceful!!! Do I need to put anything in the solar bird bath for the water??? Should I change the water everyday???? Thank You for the 2 gifts….I need to get a suet feeder. What is the pop.outz that you are speaking about on the card that you sent me?? Also, I have a bird house, should I put the feathers, moss and horse hair in the house with some hanging out in order to attract birds??? I am not sure how I should present this to the birds?
Thank You so much and any information is greatly appreciated!!!
Sounds like you’re on your way to becoming a bird-fanatic like me 🙂
It really is so cool just to sit and watch, sorta takes you away from the “day-to-day”. Even though I’ve been doing this for a long time, there are still scenes and birds who never cease to amaze and bring joy!
The first brood of Bluebirds fledged a few weeks ago, and mama brought the babies down to the feeder last night. When they first leave the nest, they stay in the tree-tops for about the first 10 days. So darn cute! I’ve been trying to lure Orioles for years (gorgeous birds) who are considered migratory (only here in summer). My first one was in the yard the other day. The brightest hue of yellow-orange I’ve ever seen! They eat grape jelly and oranges!
Hummingbirds will come back to the same place every year if they find the spot to their liking. Last night while sitting outside, one buzzed my head and sat only a few inches away while drinking at the feeder! What a site when they’re that close! Jeez… this sounds like a blog post right here!
Anyway, you’re off to a good start because fresh water really does entice more birds.
Not sure if you have any other feeders, but thistle feeders are very cool. Goldfinches (great little songbirds) will stick around all year if you feed thistle. In summer, they molt (shed old feathers and grow new new ones) and turn an electric lemon yellow color. Sweet songs and very gentle birds too! Thistle (also called nyjer) won’t germinate to sprout weeds, and squirrels usually leave these feeders in peace! It’s not cheap seed though 🙁
Just buzz me any time with any bird questions!
Have a swell day!
Its great when cool stuff comes along that really works! This innovative nyjer feeder is unlike any other in the way it distributes the seed. Instead of one large tube with lots of perches, The Finches Favorite 3-Tube Nyjer Feeder operates on a horizontal principle. Typically, seed sitting at the bottom of a finch or nyjer feeder does just that… it sits there and molds – then it starts to stink! And then your finches will stop visiting.
With the cost of thistle/nyjer seed these days (some refer to it as black gold) who can afford the waste? Not only does it make great sense as far as seed staying fresh longer… but all 36 birds will be in full view when this feeders’ perches are occupied. That’s a pretty impressive statement, and an even more fantastic sight to behold!
Nyjer is also unlike any other birdseed or seed mix. Its non-germinating property means no weeds sprouting, and squirrels usually leave these feeders in peace! If you feed thistle year-round, Goldfinches’ electric yellow plumage will grace the yard in summer. If you already offer thistle in your yard, an extra feeder is always helpful during Goldfinches’ busy season. The babies are fed nyjer almost exclusively. Goldfinches have one of the latest nesting seasons, so it’s not too late! Don’t forget the fresh water too, birds are drawn to this life force year-round.