Category Archives: Birds

Knockin’ Robin Update

After publishing my Rockin’ Robin post I did some searching on the internet to try to find a solution for our knockin’ robin problem. I was pretty excited when I can across an article, that I believe was put out by the Texas Department of Natural Resources, (I forgot to save the link) that had a simple solution that they claimed not only worked but worked immediately. What I needed to do was take a highlighter (marker) and draw grid lines on the inside of the window. The horizontal lines should be no more than 4 inches apart while the vertical lines should be no more than 2 inches apart. EASY!

Hopefully this will be the last time we see this.

After following the procedure I waited, hopeful that this worked to ward off the bird and I would be able to promote this simple method to others who experienced similar problems. Instead I have to be honest and tell you that this did not work. It was about an hour later that the bird was back on the attack – flying into the same window – same place, and he continued to do so throughout the rest of the day. Whether this is a case of don’t believe everything you read on the internet or if birds in Michigan are different than birds in Texas I am not certain. I can’t say that this method would never work just that it did not for me.

After that failure I got off the internet and turned my attention to what I was really witnessing. As mentioned above the bird was consistently flying into the same window at the same spot. Let me explain. There are two windows that are set only a few inches apart giving the appearance of one large window. Each of the two windows also has two panes of glass the lower pane slides upward to open while the upper pane is stationary. The lower panes have screens on the outside to keep bugs out when they are open. The window on the left-hand side has a vinyl mini-blind hanging on it that for the most part remains closed. It also has a curtain. The window on the right-hand side is where the dogs like to look out so the mini-blind was removed quite a while back. (Dogs and mini-blinds do not mix.) That window does have a curtain though. The upper right-hand pane was the only place that the robin was attacking, not the panes covered by screen or mini-blind.

The next thing I did was to take the mini-blind from the left window and move it to the window on the right. Thankfully the brackets were still in place so this was easily accomplished. I raised the blind so that it was only covering the upper pane, this way the dogs can still see out without bothering the blind. It was a real AHA! moment as I observed the bird begin attacking the window on the left and for the most part leaving the window that was covered with the blind alone.

It took a couple of days before we got a new mini-blind hung on the left-hand window. We had to mount new brackets because the new blind would not fit in the old brackets. During those days I was able to observe that the bird was consistently attacking the pane that was not covered by either screen or mini-blind so I was pretty well convinced that hanging a new blind would be an effective way to stop this birds behavior.

It’s only been a couple of days since we hung the second mini blind but I will share what we have observed so far. For what remained of the first day after hanging the blind I did observe the robin at the window a couple of times but he did not hit the window as hard as he had previously been doing. It seemed more like he was just looking, not fighting. My husband noticed that the robin was spending a lot of the day perched on the top of my car which was parked in the driveway right next to the tree. This was a BIG problem because he was pooping all over my car. My husband chased him off when he saw him but neither of us had all day to stand guard.

The second day and now well into the third day he was/is gone. He was not sitting on the car, nor have I witnessed him flying into or up to the window at all. YAY! Peace has been restored to our home and neighborhood. 🙂

Rockin’ Robin

I will start by saying that my husband and I have a great appreciation for wildlife lest you get the wrong idea while reading this post.

For the last several years the maple tree outside our bedroom window has been the spring/summer home for a pair of robins. We have been mostly aware of this because one of the robins (the early bird) starts singing very loudly each morning – hours before the sun comes up.

From a distance this Robin’s song may be a soothing sound somewhere in the background of our dreams but from fifteen to twenty feet away, even through a wall/window, it sounds like and dance tune coming on with the speakers at full volume. I don’t think I know anyone who wakes up ready to dance at three or four o’clock in the morning. We certainly don’t.

I do understand that the early bird gets the worm but why is it that only this one feels the need to announce it to the whole world???

Last year one of the Robins started a new annoying behavior. I’m assuming this is the male since their job is protect their family. He began flying into our (closed) window. Not just once but over and over again – day after day.

I have read that one reason for this is that he may see his own reflection in the window and think it is another male threatening his nest or family.

The good news is that this year that the pair have found a different tree in the area to build their home. I can still hear the singing in the early morning hours but it’s coming from a distance and not nearly loud enough to wake me from a restful sleep.

The bad news is that even though they are not living in our tree this knockin’ robin continues to mount aggressive attacks on our bedroom window.

His behavior is baffling to say the least. Is he defending his territory? Is he in some kind of distress?

Or has he completely lost his mind?

Monday as I wrote my word of the week post, and vowed to put more effort into offering grace to the undeserving, I thought of this Robin. Yesterday I decided to try to help him. I taped sheets of newspaper to the inside of the window thinking that this might reduce the reflection (appearance of another robin) or in some other way deter him from slamming his body into the glass. We were out at the farm for most of the day so I really didn’t know if it did any good until this morning when the knockin’ robin was at it again.

So it’s back to the drawing board as they say or favorite search engine as the case my be. I’ll give you an update if I find anything that works. I am also open to suggestions.

Have you ever witnessed this type of behavior in a bird? Do you know of anything that might deter this behavior?

55 Things #40 – Outside My Window

Click here to learn more about my “55 Things” and here to view previous posts in this series.

It was this post in 2016 when I first wrote about being visited by a cardinal. Since then we have a pair of cardinals who regularly visit our court yard. I see them often during fall, winter and spring but then they tend to disappear in the summer. This guy, who visited today, looks young so perhaps he is their offspring. I am looking forward to seeing more of him.

Thanks for visiting. 🙂

Our Little Piece Of Earth

Several blogs that I have seen this morning have reminded me that it is Earth Day. In fact it is the 50th year that this day has been celebrated. It is really just a coincidence that I have prepared a post with lots of pictures of our little piece of this earth but I invite you to have a look around.

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Even though we lost all of our bees over the winter we still have two hives that have some honey in them. On the days that are warm and sunny they are being visited by what we assume are wild honey bees. Since there is little available for them to forage this early in the year these bees are eating the honey that remains in the hives. It is good to know there are still honey bees in the area.

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Daffodils are blossoming and the bushes in the background are forsythia just beginning to bud out. We have never had the forsythia blossom so fully. Last year we decided not to prune them but to wait until after they are done blossoming this spring. It seems to have worked.

Yellow is a happy color. 🙂

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It shouldn’t be long before the forsythia is fully blossomed. I think it will be a stunning backdrop for the pond.

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These small daffodils and white hyacinths were planted 5 years ago in memory of my husband’s mother. My husband had bought them for her to brighten up her room when she was in the hospital. After she passed away we brought them home and planted them in the prayer garden. They are the first daffodils to blossom every year.


The garlic is doing well. I love seeing them come up in neat, orderly rows.

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These small red shoots are a peony bush the I planted last year in memory of my Aunt Shirley. I am so happy to see it coming up.

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I spotted the first dandelions to open. They were growing in the middle of my oregano patch so I will likely dig them out. Personally I love to see dandelions in bloom they just don’t belong in my oregano patch.


Above are cosmos and below are primrose. Both were added to the prayer garden last year. They were given to my husband by a lady whose home he was working at while he was working the landscaping job.

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The cosmos continued to flower all last summer and were not touched by the deer, but the top growth on the primrose died off after being transplanted. They then formed new leaves but did not flower. I guess I will find out this year if they are deer candy or not.



A cardinal was visiting the chicken yard. This is not unusual. Many birds (and rabbits, and squirrels and even deer) visit that area since there is always food available.



Blue berry bushes are beginning to bud out as are apple trees (below).

IMG_6435We witnessed something we have never seen before on Sunday. Honey bees were foraging in the daffodils.


We have had daffodils growing since before we began keeping bees and if you have been following my blog for very long you know that I always watch to see where the bees are and what plants they are foraging.



This is the first time in eight years that we have seen the honey bees collecting daffodil pollen. Since I am not skilled enough as a photographer to get a picture of the pollen attached to their bodies you will just have to take my word that they were collecting pollen to take back to their hive.

As I was working at the farm on Monday I noticed this egret land near the pond. He or she quickly swooped up a tasty treat. I’m not sure if it was a frog or a fish.


It then continued to make it’s way around the edge of the pond.







It was about 45 minutes later that I saw it fly away so I can only assume it left with a full belly.

Not everything that is happing at the farm is as passive as this appears.

On Sunday I decided it was time to start preparing the ground around the apple trees for the companion plants I am going to put in.


Since my husband was working in a different area, we put Ranger on a tie near where I was working. When he saw me digging in the dirt he decided to come and help. I have to admit that he was much more efficient digging with his paws than I was with a trowel. Unfortunately after digging for a short bit he sniffed the area and realized there were no mice hiding in that ground, so he was done.

I finished removing the grass and top layer of soil around the base of the tree – only six more to go. I will then be planting chives which are said to ward off insects and prevent apple scab and nasturtiums which are also reported to repel insects. We won’t know until summer if these methods are working but lets all hope that I’ll be posting pictures of beautiful apples later this year.

Now this post is getting long and we’re heading out to work in the asparagus patch (it should be coming up soon) so I’ll save the information about the work we are doing there for another post.

Thanks for visiting and until next time be well.

How are you celebrating earth day?


Mornings At The Farm

September 5, 2019

My plan this morning was to clean garlic. There were about 150 bulbs that I wanted to get done. I figured it would take me about an hour to complete this task so I also took some time to enjoy the day. Would you like to join me?


As I walked past the garden I was greeted by this sunflower. I wonder, is it possible to look at a sunflower and not smile? As you can tell I was not the only one happy to see this flower. The honey bees were all over it.


This was the view from were I was working. Nothing but blue sky and sunshine this morning.


While walking through the prayer garden I discovered that the honey bees were also foraging the anise hyssop. This is a recent addition to the prayer garden and was largely added for the benefit of the bees.  I only see one bee in this picture, but I assure you there were more that the camera did not capture.


My husband discovered that bees like this plant while working at his landscaping job. They had to go to a greenhouse to purchase some anise hyssop plants for a job they were doing, and he said the bees were all over the plants. A couple weeks later he took me to that greenhouse to purchase some for our farm.

Another visitor to the prayer garden this morning was this Hummingbird, searching for nectar in the hanging plants.

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It is a bit camouflaged by the green plants in the background. Do you see it just left of center?

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It is now to the right of this basket.

In recent weeks we have seen the return of an annual visitor. For at least the past 5 years we have seen this bird (or one like it) in and around our pond in the late summer. I am assuming it is the same bird and although we usually see just one at a time on rare occasions we will see two.

Since it was not a bird I was familiar with and was unable to positively identify it through our bird books or internet searches, in 2016 I turned to my blog readers for help through this post. While the answer did not come through the post comments, I learned  that our bird was a Green Herron.

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He or she is a quiet bird and blends well into the grasses that surround the pond.

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Can you believe this is the same bird? It’s appearance certainly changes as it makes a quick getaway.

Before noon I return to the house with that batch of garlic cleaned.

September 6, 2019

Though there was rain in the forecast I was hopeful it would hold off and I could finish up cleaning the last batch (about 100 bulbs) of garlic.

The sky was gray and the sun was hidden. Before getting started I took in some of the surroundings.


Maple leaves are indicating that Fall is not far off.


Squirrels have been collecting nuts.


This sunflower with a fancy hairdo.


The Norway Spruce that is loaded with pinecones.


With the threat of rain it was not a good morning for cleaning garlic so my plan B was to work in the prayer garden.


As I brought out my garden tools the rain began.

Perhaps plan C, canning tomatoes, is a better job for today.

Thanks for joining me. Are you seeing signs of Fall in your area?