I was finally able to hang my new bird feeder -- given to me by a friend along with a mixture of bird seed -- from the upper deck of my house, which had been encased in ice for weeks. (Yeah, spring!)
I had no action at the feeder the first day after I hung it. On the second, I saw that two small birds (chickadees?) had found the addition to the yard and were taking turns flying over to peck at the openings in the feeder.
Shortly after that, I noticed that a squirrel, being the clever creature that he is, had decided to roam around on the ground under the feeder to scarf up choice bits of bird seed dropped by the birds. He must have been thinking that he was born under a lucky star. How much easier could this be? I was looking forward to being able to see the beautiful birds at the feeder from my office window.
Well, apparently the squirrel was greedier than I gave him credit for because the next day he managed to make his way up to the second story deck and was leaning over the railing to get at the seed firsthand, tired of waiting for the birds to knock some loose.
Now this new development complicated things. I was afraid that one day I would walk out onto the deck and watch a hungry squirrel whoosh past me into the house. Trying to corner him would have made for a great America's Funniest Home Videos tape, but not something I was interested in experiencing. So the feeder has been moved to another choice spot which I hope will be located by the birds and not by marauding squirrels. Good luck with that.
Since the spring weather has sprung this past week, we have also noticed that our lawn looks like a Google Earth screenshot. There are holes everywhere in the yard leading to long, muddy trenches. Apparently, and this has not been verified but people in the know say it's true, our lawn is slowly being destroyed by voles. Yep, we are talkin' voles -- not moles as we might have guessed. These little critters have been burrowing on top of the grass, leaving trenches wherever their paths have taken them.
We are in the process of researching ways to get rid of the voles and hopefully save the yard so we can enjoy it in the warm months to come.
After finally being done with shoveling snow and dealing with a tough winter, I guess it's time to turn our attention to the yard and garden. Apartment living is sounding better and better!
By Teresa K. Flatley