Monday, April 11, 2011

Northern Mockingbird

Although the bird feeders have been long taken down, the bird bath is a permanent fixture of the small garden. It is surrounded by a Lady Banks rose bush which has just started to put out its tiny yellow blooms. It is a rambler, but I hack at it weekly to keep it small and out of the rest of the garden area.

The little birds aren't too interested in the bird bath. I'm not sure if it is because they don't take water baths (some birds just use dust to control bird mites) or if that particular bath just doesn't appeal to them and they go the creek that runs behind the townhouses parallel to mine. I've seen sparrows among the lilies looking for bugs, so I know they still come to the small garden.

But the bigger birds - the robins, mourning doves, starlings and so forth - adore the bird bath. I keep it filled and try to keep it clean (a losing battle with the redbud's blooms falling off the tree now). And yesterday afternoon, the Northern Mockingbird who lives with his mate across the parking lot in the huge holly tree came and took a bath in it, too.

He's resting on the back fence, fluffing his feathers in the sun and drying out. Soon, he and his mate will have a nest full of babies and those of us who live near the holly tree will be dive bombed by both mockingbirds who view us as a threat.


Anyes said...

He looks like he means business! Watch out for the beak.

frayedattheedge said...

A stunning photo! I took a photo of a collared dove which was in the garden this mornign (a rare visitor) then forgot to put it in tonight's post!!

Dan said...

What a beautiful picture, you've caught all of the detail of the feathers. I've noticed our smaller garden birds don't spend much time at the birdbath either, and the sparrows definitely prefer dust!

Karen said...

Anyes: He certainly does, especially when they are nesting. Then they get very aggressive.

Anne: If you get a chance, please post the dove picture. I'd love to see it.

Dan: I was lucky with the picture. I took it from about 30 feet away, in my dining room away from the sliding glass door as not to scare him off. I think you're right about the sparrows and I don't have any dust for them.