Back home: me and the bluebirds

The bluebirds are back (again). As usual, they arrived a month ago, tried out the nesting boxes, and left when the swallows came. But again as usual, they returned and are now nesting.

Feeling extremely tired due to flu – don’t have the strength for heavy-duty gardening, so here’s a few pictures from today. Poland and earlier spring migrants can wait a day or two. It is very frustrating feeling so weak.

The bluebirds are back (again). As usual, they arrived a month ago, tried out the nesting boxes, and left when the swallows came. But again as usual, they returned and are now nesting.

Bluebird
Bluebird
Bluebird and wasp
Bluebird and wasp

I only got one clear picture today as I was working so just took a few seconds hoping to get one of the bluebird trying to render a wasp (yellow-jacket) harmless, before feeding to young. It shook and pecked this one (clear through binoculars but I didn’t get the photo quite right) for a good ten minutes.

Although these lady slipper orchids are relatively common, this is the only clump I know around here so I was very pleased to see several small outlier plants meaning it is successfully seeding, so I might risk moving one of the small ones just as insurance against vandalism as this clump can be seen from the road if you know where to look.

Yellow Lady Slipper Orchids
Yellow Lady Slipper Orchids

I posted a few pictures of this moth already, on Twitter, but here’s another one. They are the same family as the hummingbird hawk moth which I always find interesting as a case of parallel evolution – you could mistake it for a small hummingbird if you didn’t know about the moths, and it feeds in daylight whereas this Sphinx is a night flier. I don’t know what the caterpillars eat – almost afraid to ask – as those horrible tomato hornworms that can demolish a tomato crop over night are in the same family.

Blinded Sphinx Moth
Blinded Sphinx Moth

Author: Eric Lawton

Eric is a natural philosopher living in rural Ontario

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