Last night, was possibly one of the best evenings we've had weather-wise so far. After putting the kids to bed (nice and tired too-- they spent most the day outside!), we retreated to the outdoors to have a fire. Evenings like this are too rare. Sitting inside watching tv would not be on the agenda.
Basking in the evening sky, we listened to the birds chirping. It has taken a few years of work on my part, to sort out the birds living around this house. When we moved in, i was very excited about all the bird houses around the property. Bursting with excitement, i filled them all up and awaited the birds. Well, i handily invited some Grackles... who handily drove all the pretty-singsongey birds away!
It took me awhile to figure it out too. I began to notice the lack of Gold Finches. I told myself that they had simply moved on and that my time of enjoyment was up. Then one day, when i was walking out the greenhouse to water plants, a Grackle swooped at me! I pretended that he did not really 'intend' to swoop on me, but then it happened again one my way back to the house! I vowed that Mr. Grackle had seen his last days around my house. (Note: The Grackle also woke me up every day with his ridiculous hooting and hollering around 5am!)
Running to Google with my issue, i was super excited to find out that the Grackle had a nickname. ( < insert > sarcasm here) "The Farmer's Pest." Sheesh- Mr. Grackle sure was a pest and apparently, all my bird houses were landing pads full of food and that was why the Grackle had taken over. They are not agile birds and need to land to catch food. Once they realized how much food was at their feet, they made all the other birds leave to protect the food source. Wish i had known that earlier! I quickly emptied all the bird feeders and waited for Mr. Grackle to hit the road. It took a few days, but then they appeared gone.
Unfortunately, no pretty-singsongey birds came back that year. They were a little afraid to say the least. But next year, i welcomed them with open arms and a BIG finch feeder, just.for.them!~ The agile birds they are, allows them to stay airborne while feeding, so Mr. Grackle can't get their birdseed. Two seasons in, last night, i realized how many Gold and White Finches i have attracted. They ARE the bird you want around, if you're the type that smiles when you hear birds singing.