||I’m featuring today, a nature post by Gail Lee Martin’s daughter, Cynthia Ross. Gail taught all her children to observe, preserve, and love nature. She helped them identify insects, took them on geology field trips, and encouraged them to appreciate wildflowers, lichen, trees, and wildlife.
Birdwatching is one of Cindy’s longtime hobbies. Here’s her post about the Eastern Phoebe.
Early this spring several Eastern Phoebe built nests along the ledges of our house. They line the top of the nest with moss gathered along the creek. They’re a feisty little bird; so it’s interesting to watch them and listen to their song.
The great thing about them is that they are flycatchers, which might explain why we haven’t had a lot of mosquitoes this year. When Larry was preparing to paint, he power washed the house first and accidently hit one of the nests and it fell. I rescued it from being trampled by moving it to the porch.
The other 3 nests have survived and we heard the chirps of baby birds while we painted around them. We tried not to paint next to them for too long a period so the parents could still feed them. These birds are the first to migrate home after their winter travels.
Further, wonderful news is that the Blue Jays are finally back in large numbers. We didn’t see one jay or chickadee all winter. Last week a water turtle was digging a hole to lay her eggs near our small garden patch. I’ll have to check back to see if they hatch.
For the first time in 30 years, I finally got a bachelor button to grow and bloom. Only one tiny flower at this point but at least it is a start. Would you believe I almost pulled it thinking it was a weed last week. For some reason, this flower always reminded me of Grandma and Grandpa McGhee. Plus, I remember they had another pinkish flower vining all along the yard fence, possibly a type of sweet pea.
A white-throated flycatcher (not an eastern phoebe, but similar). Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
You can read more about birds and wildlife at Cynthia’s nature blog, Moss Creek.