Cardinal love birds and other garden scenes

Squirrel nest and dining room, cardinal mating rituals and bluebird guarding its nest.

The pair of cardinals that live in our garden have their bonding rituals.  Each time they come to the feeder, the male offers the female the first seed.  After that, she’s on her own.

Cardinal kissing 1
Cardinal kissing 1
Cardinals kissing 2
Cardinals kissing 2

The bluebirds are nesting again.  The male stands guard on top of the pole to which the nesting box is attached.

Bluebird
Bluebird

Now for small mammals.  In our back field there are some stone piles from when the field was cleared.  Now it is growing over again and there is a clump of pines around one of the piles.

A red squirrel has made its home there.  Here is the nest:

Squirrel nest
Squirrel nest

And the stone pile provides an excellent dining room, complete with table:

Squirrel table
Squirrel table

The table is the larger rock in the middle towards the back. The brown stuff on the top that looks like leaves is actually the remnants of all the pine cones that the squirrel has been eating. Here it is closer up.

Squirrel table 2
Squirrel table 2

The cones are shredded to get at the seeds; you can see an almost intact one centre-left.

Small mammals seem to like rocks.  We keep a “small mammal sitting-rock” on our deck because they seem to like the view and perhaps some heat from the rock.  Today it was the chipmunk’s turn:

Chipmunk on sitting-rock
Chipmunk on sitting-rock

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Eric Lawton

Eric is a natural philosopher living in rural Ontario

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