The birds eat better than I do.

I’ve been feeding birds for many, many years. I find it relaxing to watch them as they prepare to build their nests in the spring, then later bring their young around to teach them about the “good” food that magically appears for them. Of course, during the winter months, keeping the feeders full is simply a good, humane thing to do.

I can always count on the cardinals to stop by early in the evening, and scold me if there isn’t any food. The chickadees visit throughout the day, flitting from the tree to the hanging feeder underneath. The tree outside my great room is a canopy shape so it provides good hiding protection from bigger birds.

In the backyard, I have a thistle feeder for goldfinches. It’s set off by itself because they tend to be more timid birds and don’t like to compete with others. There are several pairs that visit and they look like tiny rays of sunshine when several bright yellow males feed all at once.

Then there’s a larger feeder out by the spruce trees that I fill with oilers. The sparrows, cardinals, and doves keep it drained of food. Once in a while a hawk visits, sitting on the fence to see what prey he can carry off. When he/she arrives, all the other birds escape quietly to the spruces for cover.

The front feeder, under the canopy, is where I put the “prime” food. I use a no-mess mix that is sunflower hearts, peanuts, etc. The birds LOVE it! But so does this little guy. He has to be an acrobat to reach the feeder, but somehow he manages. He fills his pouches … runs off … comes back for more … and so on.

I had to buy more seed today, and since I happened to be in Westerville, I stopped by Wild Birds Unlimited on State St. If I’m in the Dublin or Hilliard area, I stop at their store on Riverside Dr, just north of Hayden Run. They have a new product called Jim’s Birdacious Bark Butter. It’s a peanut butter and suet mixture that can be spread on tree bark. I bought it JUST FOR the chipmunk, hoping that he’ll leave the good seed alone.

We’ll see how well that works!

Have you ever wondered why a chipmunk is cute, but a mouse isn’t?

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