Birding Blind…Chair Optional (Sound!)

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” ~ Mahatma Ghandi

The kitchen and breakfast room is where I do the bulk of my birding, much as I spend my days prepping all those greens and veggies to eat. Binoculars are perpetually hanging around my neck while there, the camera always within an arm’s reach. I see a host of birds right from where I stand, out on the feeders, in the birdbath, among the trees — even as far as out as back by the creek.

This Blind is Not Too Shabby!

The yard is an oasis because I worship my soil and everything in it. I trim bushes and trees only ‘moderately’ so that little birdies get protection from predators; they have plenty of great reasons to come close to my windows where I can enjoy their personalities up close. None of my other neighbors give them that same care and respect, so the little guys have come to prefer my yard to gather in great numbers, not theirs.

Aside from companion planting and building healthy soil, birds are a vegetable garden’s best defense against insect invasions. It is rare when I lose a crop to caterpillars or flies. If you go out of your way to welcome these armies to your yard, they will keep ‘the bad guys’ in check. Learn how to attract nature’s 10 best feathered pest control to your own garden so you too can be a kitchen-counter birder. They will do the added benefit of entertaining you — free of charge.

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This list is the variety we see in our yard every single day during late winter. I don’t even have to leave the house which saves me gasoline, time, and money. With 36 species on this list alone, it’s no wonder we hit 100 different ones by the end of February in our annual count. We continue to strive to top 250 again this year.

Blue Jay, American Crow, Northern Mockingbird
Eastern Phoebe, Eastern Bluebird
Carolina Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse
Nashville, Yellow-rumped, and Orange-crowned Warblers
Rufous and Black-chinned Hummingbirds, Carolina Wren,
Mourning Dove, Red-winged Blackbird,
White Ibis, Great Egret, Great Blue Heron, Little Blue Heron
Wood Duck, Gadwall, Blue-winged Teal, Black-bellied Whistling Duck
Downy, Red-bellied, and Pileated Woodpeckers
Red-shouldered and Red-tailed Hawks
Turkey and Black Vultures
Northern Cardinal, American Goldfinch, House Finch
Chipping, House, and White-crowned Sparrows
Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Baby Barn Swallow
Baby Barn Swallow

Love and take care of your little birdies.

In turn, they will warm your heart, fill your soul,
and keep you honest to your very self.

22 thoughts on “Birding Blind…Chair Optional (Sound!)

  1. I love the birds that visit my yard, but I was NOT happy to discover the lettuce I had set out to harden off was promptly munched down gone. I even saw some hopping around on my outdoor table, like they were just waiting for brunch to arrive. I give them a half acre of unsprayed chaos, and they go for my 2 6-packs of baby lettuce.

    My greatest amusement right now is watching the scrub jays plant acorns in my mulch paths. I just pull them up when they sprout, so its not an issue, but so funny to watch them hop around.

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    1. It figures, right? I wonder which of the birds is eating your lettuce. They are insectivores and seed eaters…is it possible that you have snails? And that the birds were simply complicit in a different crime (eating your snails)?

      Snails are our only leafy veggie concern, but the keyhole seems to have them at bay for the time being. Could be they’re just taking a long time to find all that green just yet…

      PS – No worries on the typos. I just fix ’em ’cause I’m anal like that. 😀

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  2. As Vegans, one thing that’s vital to remember is that the tiny nonhuman beings that we kill because they would otherwise strip the gardens we plant are not “pests.” They are each sentient individuals who have the exact same moral weight as your children do. Which means they also have the same right we do to profit from the plants and other parts of the environment we all share.

    Just because we find it necessary to harm them in order to protect our food supply does not mean we should not show them respect and allow them their dignity. Which also means we need to always remain aware that the way we speak or write about them has consequences.

    While it’s true that we do need to use some methods to control which nonhumans obtain maximum value from the habitat we live in and which of them are denied their fundamental rights, since their rights sometimes conflict with our right to thrive in that situation, we need to remember that it’s more about maintaining a balance as it might exist if we were not present, and not at all about eliminating “harmful pests” just because we happen to have our own interests that conflict with theirs.

    Otherwise, awesome post :^)

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    1. Good points. Yes, I routinely share my yard’s yields with critters of all shapes sizes. I don’t mind them much (no, not even the munchy caterpillars) because there is harmony both in my soil and in the way I ‘manage’ them. (I don’t.)

      Many of gardens’ ‘pest’ problems stem from people’s’ lack of understanding when it comes to soil and the food web. The easiest methods result a host of unintended consequences, most of which people don’t even realize was caused by the very thing they used in the first place.

      Out ancestors knew this: nature knows best.

      Thanks for commenting!

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    1. Wow, Christy. That is such a nice thing to say. You can come by here anytime with words like that. 😀 I hope you enjoyed this ‘immersive’ post. I figured out how to attach sounds! You now hear what I hear and I am hoping to do more of these in the future. Cheers! Happy Monday.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I was equally delighted to provide it! Wrens and hawks and finches sing to me every morning (I’d like to think it’s all for me), and sometimes, it’s the owls. It only took me four months to figure out how to do it. :\

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  3. Oh Shannon this was a delightful post! I loved seeing your bird blind kitchen, hearing how you fix meals and bird simultaneously. It’s great that you outlined the important aspects of drawing in birds, and your bird list is extremely impressive. I, too, do a lot of birding from my house, have feeders, and am constantly running from window to window eyeing friends flying by. Many thanks. 😀

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    1. How did I already know that about you? I too am BADD (birdie attention deficit disorder) when it comes to the inside ‘window spaces.’ My kids hate when I’m birding indoors and they are put the back-back burner (the food is on the back burner). Thanks for your lovely comment, Jet.

      Liked by 1 person

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