Even though we are now deep in that famous desert dry heat of a Tucson summer, our olive tree is playing host to its own little wilderness of local birds. I admit I helped this along by making an addition to my improvised bird bath: bird feeders.
And now I’m becoming addicted. To bird feeders. Really, to watching birds enjoy the feeders. I started with a ‘kiddie’ model and then every few weeks I’d wander into the Wild Birds store and buy another. So far I have a bigger ‘hopper’ feeder – a mesh cylinder with a platform – a goldfinch feeder and a quail block. And I’m not done yet. I’ve got my eye on a special formula Wild Birds makes called Nuts ’n Bugs, a delicious concoction of ground peanuts and a thousand flies. Yum! It requires a special kind of feeder to spread it on, but promises to attract an even wider variety of birds that prefer insects to seeds. But as it stands, here’s what I’ve observed from my office window in my short time as a backyard ornithologist: