Bloglet: Deer in my Neighborhood!

We have a lot of white tail deer in our area. Over the years, they have bedded down under the spruce outside my dining room window, climbed my front steps to knock seed out of my feeders for a midnight snack, and stood on their hind legs and eaten the lower branches off of all the arbor vitae on the south side of my patio.

Today, five young ones walked into view on the street in front of my house. I grabbed my camera and was able to photograph and film them briefly.

When I opened my front door, they ran between my house and into the neighbor’s side yard. They were headed toward the 110+ acre park one street behind us. The park has a lake, lots of woods and prairie, and reaches almost to the center of town behind the public pool. It occupies a valley and the high ground to the north. Deer are apt to pop up unexpectedly just about anywhere.

I think they are ranging into town because food is getting scarce. There is some good browse in town. We’ve had some really hard weather, snow, and ice. I hope they don’t discover my raspberry patch! Begonia

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Midwinter Composting

We compost year round here on my little farm in town! All of our vegetable scraps and egg shells go into the covered stainless steel gallon pail under the sink and then out to the compost bins on the northside of my house.

In the fall, I save leaves (which unfortunately are frozen into a solid lump because I neglected to tarp them last fall.) I have a dear friend who saves some of her chicken manure for me. A feed sack of chicken doo is enough for one layer on my compost pile. Combined with my kitchen scraps, I have the perfect recipe for great soil.

But first I had to remove a foot of snow that had accumulated on top of my pile. I don’t cover my pile because I want the moisture to be there in layers in the spring.

I used the rest of the bags to fertilize my raspberries. There is enough winter left to break down the chickens’ very hot manure so that it will do the canes good rather than harm when they come out of dormancy. Begonia

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Winter Wild Bird Feeding: It’s for the Birds!

BEFORE

I just had to share these before and after pictures of my patio where I throw down seed for the ground feeding birds.

AFTER

Some of the birds that I feed in the winter are ground feeders, like mourning doves and this junco, or snowbird. We call them snowbirds because they only come during the time of the year when it snows. They summer further north and fly down here to the balmy south to avoid the really harsh weather!

Other birds that prefer to perch and feed will also eat from the ground like the sparrows, finches, cardinals, and blue jays, but mainly they feed at my hanging feeders.

Let’s not forget the (very fat) squirrels, possums, rabbits, and the occasional deer! They also enjoy what the birds don’t eat in a day. I don’t purposely feed them but they do clean up any leftovers. Begonia

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