Hello everyone! I hope this Six on Saturday post finds you all well. The weather continues to be weird but all is well regardless. I filled the bird feeder yesterday afternoon but this morning a lot of ground feeders were looking for food. So, I went outside and sprinkled some on the ground under the feeder. Several species of sparrows and the Dark-Eyed Junco will go to the tube feeder but they prefer eating off the ground or even the at the open feeder. I didn’t have much luck taking bird photos this morning because the birds I wanted photos of kept flying off. There is too much going on in the front yard to allow them to relax.
#1-A few American Robin (Turdus migratorius) have been here all winter but there are a lot more now. They don’t normally eat birdseed and the ground is pretty much frozen. They seemed a little bewildered hopping around looking at the ground hoping a worm would emerge… They often complain about bullying from the other birds, but with a name like Turdus…
#2-Several House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus) males were squabbling this morning but I finally got this good shot of one at the feeder. I noticed there were several extra-large female sparrows feeding then realized they were Purple Finch females. DUH!
#3– Talk about a bird that is hard to photograph! A single Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor) was so excited it couldn’t sit still. It would fly down to the ground then back to the tree, preen its feathers, then fly to the feeder, then to the ground… GEEZ! I don’t know how many photos I took of it and they were all even more blurry than this one.
#4-The White-Breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) was happily playing around on the tree most of the time. It seems to prefer seeds from the ground and the open feeder but on occasion will also go to the tube feeder. It seems like it prefers being upsidedown as well… Sometimes I have seen several of them fairly close together in the elm trees but only one (or one at a time) comes to feed. I have several good photos but this one is the best I could do this morning.
#5-The Bird’s Eye Speedwell (Veronica persica) are the first wildflowers to bloom. There are thousands and they are VERY tiny. I had to use a magnifying glass to get this photo. A very similar species, Wayside Speedwell (Veronica polita), looks so similar I am not sure how to tell them apart. One supposedly has slightly smaller flowers, but I bet if you look the two side by side you may still be confused… Their fruits are different but there aren’t any yet since they have just started flowering. Ummm… Steyermark’s Flora of Missouri says V. persica flowers April-June and V. polita March-June. Hmmm… So, maybe this species is V. polita instead of V. persica. Photos of the stems on Missouri Plants shows they are kind of reddish on V. persica and greener on V. polita. The plants in my yard have green stems. Well, GEEZ! I was hoping for V. persica because I like the name “Bird’s Eye” better than “Wayside”. I did notice their flowers fall off very easily, too. Did I mention their flowers are VERY tiny?
#6-The Kalanchoe x laetivirens (Mother of Thousands) flowers are now opening! This plant was in the back bedroom but the top of it was touching the shelf above it. A couple of days ago I looked at it and two of the buds had opened so I moved it to my bedroom. I have had this plant for several years and have whacked its stem in half many times to regrow it. If you don’t do this once a year the plant gets very leggy and its leaves are smaller. Cut the stem and the leaves grow HUGE.
Some information online sys this plant rarely flowers indoors and they are insignificant. Hmmm… I definitely wouldn’t call this inflorescence insignificant…
That’s all I have for this on Six on Saturday post. If you wish to participate in Six on Saturday posts, be sure to read the Six On Saturday-a participants guide from The Propagator.
I was busy working on the blog this week, writing wildflower pages and uploading photos. Sorry I didn’t read your posts so I will have to do some catching up…
Until next time… Be safe, stay positive, and be thankful. GET DIRTY whenever you have a chance!