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Saturday, April 26, 2008

Water Scarecrow

I bought one each of the Contech Electronics Scarecrow Motion-Activated Sprinkler and the Havahart Spray Away Motion Activated Water Repellent, to keep the neighbors cats away from my feeders. The Havahart was about $11 cheaper, but based on the units that I have, it is built cheaper, too. YMMV, of course. They both seem to work OK, but the Havahart leaks more than the Contech. Using these is not a perfect solution! Every time I mow the yard I have to move them, and as I said, they both leak, some. I knew that I was going to have trouble with placement at the one feeder, the one that needed protection the most! There is a small gap between the corner of my house and the maple tree where my feeder was mounted. The oil pipe, for deliver of heating fuel, is right at that corner, and the electric meter is on the other side of the corner. I didn't want to chase off the meter reader or the oil delivery man. On top of those two problems, there are bushes on either side of the maple tree. When the wind moved the bushes it tripped the sprayers. I had to give up on using it for protection, there. It was chasing the cats away, but it was chasing the birds, as well!

What to do? Well, if you have looked at my weather cam, you may have noticed that the feeder is no longer visible in the home location. I bought a shepherd's hook and moved the feeder away from that corner. Click preset number 5 to view in the weather cam. This will give the birds a bit more of a chance, the cats cannot pounce from behind the tree.

I am really liking the Wingscapes camera again. I was getting real tired of looking at thousands of pics from the bird feeder, now I look forward to viewing the videos from the birdbath. I don't get near as many, they are all different and all my favorite birds show up in the videos. The goldfinch, mockingbirds and cardinals all like to take an occasional drink, while some of the house sparrows like to bathe, as well. But the robins make my favorite videos, they really seem to enjoy their baths!

Posted by Dave at 2:43 PM
Edited on: Saturday, April 26, 2008 4:53 PM

Sunday, April 20, 2008


I used another section of antenna mast to mount the Wingscapes camera, and point it at the birdbath. I got some nice videos and stills, like this Robin. I am already using half the web space that Frontier allows, so I uploaded mostly to my Picasa Web space. I didn't know that I could upload video to Picasa! They look a bit grainier, but maybe it's just me. See the video on my site, the Birdsbath, House Sparrow, and Robin videos on Picasa. Also see a Wingscapes Goldfinch image on Picasa. I also uploaded a Robin and a couple other goldfinch pics, a single and a pair. These last I saw when working in the driveway. I was closer than when I took the last pics of them, so I went into the house and grabbed the camera. Of course they would not let me get as close as I had been without the camera!

Posted by Dave at 1:13 PM
Edited on: Sunday, April 20, 2008 3:50 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Monday, April 14, 2008


I put the oriole and hummingbird feeders out this weekend. I put the hummingbird feeder just outside the window, so if any actually show up, I'll have a shot of them. The oriole feeder is near the suet, if any of those show up, I can turn the downy cam into an oriole cam. :)

I've read that you should plant flowers that attract hummers, to bring them to the feeder. I'm not into flowers, and bushes don't generally bloom for very long, so I decided to try cypress vines. I looked at what others said about cypress vines, and the biggest complaint was that they can be invasive. It seems the people that complained about the vines lived in the warmer states. I don't have a garden, if it grows into the yard, I'll just mow it down!

My mom claims she fed an oriole peanut butter, but I have my doubts about that. The books say they like fruit, insects and nectar. I put out a nectar feeder. The problem with them, and the hummer feeders is, you have to clean them every few days. That isn't something I am looking forward to, so if I don't see any orioles or hummers, those feeders will be history.

I've had a birdbath since Christmas. I have often seen birds drinking from it, but today was the first that I saw a bird actually bathing in it. It was a robin, and it was amusing to watch! I might try and point the Wingscapes camera at the birdbath, try and capture a video.

Posted by Dave at 9:39 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Sunday, April 06, 2008


I saw these little guys running around under my feeder before, but I never knew what they were. Today I took a few pics to help identify them. They are dark-eyed juncos. Here is one, I also put a couple on my Picasa web page.

I saw this chickadee sitting at the feeder, all by his lonesome. It's odd, they don't migrate, but I haven't see any lately. It was sitting at the feeder for quite awhile, so I had to snap a few pics.

I noticed that the nyjer feed was going down, but I hadn't seen the culprits until today, when I saw these two. I'd like to get a better picture, but they wouldn't let me get close.

Posted by Dave at 12:05 PM
Edited on: Sunday, April 06, 2008 2:31 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Cat Stop, Again

Back in February I posted that I was going to try the Cat Stop device. A couple of days ago, I saw a cat sitting next to the Cat Stop, playing with something. I don't know what it was playing with, and I really don't want to know! So, the Cat Stop does not work for me. There are good reviews for the device, so it must work for some people. I cannot allow cats to antagonize and kill my birds, so I have to try something else. And no, I do not plan to harm the cats! Cats are not real fond of water, so I thought I would try motion triggered sprinklers. I ordered two different types, both through Amazon. Contech Electronics Scarecrow Motion-Activated Sprinkler and the Havahart Spray Away Motion Activated Water Repellent. The only problem will be the oil delivery man. I do not think he would appreciate a shower when he delivers my oil!

The Wingscapes camera caught something that I never saw before, a dove at the feeder. They are regularly on the ground under the feeder, but never ON the feeder.

Posted by Dave at 5:10 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding