It’s funny how sometimes you don’t really notice certain things until you really slow down and look. For instance, I used to walk through many forests on my way to trout streams and never noticed the world of fungi all around me, until I started looking for edible mushrooms. Suddenly, I saw mushrooms everywhere.
Out back we have 3 structures we call Imagination Stations. It seems many people can’t cope with this kind of item unless they understand it has some kind of utilitarian purpose. What are they for, they ask? Sometimes I tell people it’s good for the backyard ecology but mostly I say, it’s so visiting supernatural beings like pixies and faeries and sprites and elves and trolls have a warm place out of the wind to sleep. My brother supplied the rural mailbox so they could receives letters from friends, long-awaited cheques and of course packages, since any old fool knows supernatural beings love online shopping.
It turns out the supernatural beings share the Imagination Stations with birds. I noticed this once the snowstorm started yesterday. Lots of birds were taking shelter within the maze of branches and whatnot. I almost didn’t notice and then I caught a glimpse of some movement as a number of house sparrows moved around, shifting positions. I don’t know how many birds took shelter in these structures but I’m pretty sure they appreciated a place out of the full force of the storm.
This morning I loaded up the feeders first thing and the cardinals and house sparrows and nuthatches and chickadees showed up for breakfast, with their dark-eyed junco pals grabbing anything that hit the ground.
Up in the old apple tree, two mourning doves were hanging out as well.
I often see these lovely birds on the ground grabbing sunflower seeds with the juncos, but these two weren’t feeding this morning. It seemed to me they were enjoying the day.