Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Food For Thought - Natural Backyard Splendour

I spent some time this afternoon absorbing some natural things around me. It never ceases to amaze me how nature just carries on in spite of us...doing what it will in it's own little way.

We have a couple of bird feeders that Paul made years ago from recycled pallet wood...very cool... rustic. About 3 years ago in the spring ... one sat empty...until new tennants moved in.

Yellow Jacket wasps found it a perfect spot to create a nest! The front has an acrylic panel that by design was meant to show the level of bird food inside. To the wasps...it meant protection from the elements and enemies. Over the past years...they have returned and expanded the nest. At times there are 30 or more busy workers doing their thing...building it bigger and hatching the next generation. Weird to watch all of this happening behind a clear shield...and fascinating to see how such small creatures work as a team to build such a natural wonder!
(I must get Mel to get some pics of it...it's really awesome!)

And then there's this other backyard resident ... a young raccoon has made a home in our tree. We can see it really well from Melanie's bedroom window...I'm thinking it's a male...so I will refer to it as "him". How strange it is to watch him sleep in the crook of two branches! How is it that he never falls? He sleeps all day and then come dusk he wakes up and grooms himself...getting ready for his nightly escapades...whatever they may be...off to find some food and play with fellow racoons in the neighbourhood.

Recently I have noticed new things growing from a small compost area against the fence. This happens annually...as we tend to place old pumpkins from Halloween there...and other stuff. The leaves I'm seeing are not the usual pumpkins...maybe other small gourds that ended up there? Will have to see if anything developes...usually the bugs or a fungus gets to them and nothing developes...maybe this year will be different.

Birds...there are always a lot of them around...a variety of species...robins, blue jays, chickadees, blackbirds, sparrows, finches, waxwings, junkos, cardinals, mourning doves, starlings...and out in the field hawks, turkey vultures, crows and killdeers. I think in the next life I'd like to come back as a bird...think of the freedom! Flying would be awesome!

Spiders are another residential group that intrigue me...especially their web creation! It's not a wonder that many of us CQers add them to our work...they are way cool! Different species make different webs...some are the traditional type...with small threads making a dimensional web...but others make a mat-type web that is more elaborate...and seems it'd snare more food. I sometimes have to demolish them when I need to get yardwork done...and while this distresses me...I have no doubt that they'll be built again quickly! That's nature for ya!

Mother Nature is amazing!

1 comment:

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Marie, I love to hear about the nature happening in your yard... It must be amazing to have your own yellow-jacket science project.. how cool...

love to watch the birds and the spiders too

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