Welcome to Aunt Sally's Garden. Relax and observe nature with me
around my Milkweed Patch. Be aware of the creatures that dwell near you. Do the little things to make the world a better place.
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Flocks of these beautiful birds migrate through our county in the winter. They like to eat berries and insects. My photos don't show the eponymous bright red feathers on their wings - like drops of sealing wax.
Two years ago, I drove past a new industrial park. It was a damp morning, cold by south Texas standards. In one of the short, bare-limbed landscaping trees there huddled about eighty cedar waxwings. They were puffed, with their beaks to the wind, clustered only a few feet about the ground in that small tree. I am sure they were confused because when they visited this same location the previous year, there existed a nice patch of prairie and a scattering of mature trees. Maybe there had been a mulberry tree or native holly. Migrating birds have incredible site loyalty. They will return to the exact location year after year to hunt, feed or nest. It can be disastrous for them to return to find no habitat and non-native plants.
This week, I went to a shopping center and parked next to a holly tree covered with red berries. Nice. As I got out of the car I heard the impossibly high-pitched, yet very soft "tsee-tsee-tsee" of the cedar waxwings. Luckily, my little camera was with me. The birds would not let me get very close before they flew to another tree. I know the other shoppers wondered what the heck I was doing - walking slowly, slowly snapping pictures while I crossed the parking lot. Credits to the planners of this center that they DID plant vegetation that was useful to the wildlife.