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Our Feathered Friends - Aug. 24

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By RAY POPE
I dont know about you, but the Wilson County Fair made me feel like an old government mule. There was a lot to do, and it seemed like for every step forward, I would slip two steps backwards. It was great to see so many friends again at The Wilson Post booth. The most asked questions were concerning the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds. Ants, ants and more ants are fast becoming a real problem to some of you. If you happen to be in the Mt. Juliet area, stop by Garrs Feed and Rental and pick up an ant moat for your Hummer feeders. It hangs on your hooks and the other end goes on your feeder. It has a water hazard where the ants cant cross to get to the good stuff.

Almost like some of our golfers. You have to be careful because small birds like Carolina Chickadees will use them for a bird bath. Remember to keep fresh water available at all times in this dry period.

Angel Kane and Becky Andrews spent some time at our booth, meeting and greeting some of their fans, and there was quite a few of them. I am already looking forward to next years fair, and I am in hopes that I will get my old location back next to Sherry Thompson and her daughter Miranda. It just wasnt the same with someone between us.

I received a letter from Mrs. Grace Farrar who lives out in the northeastern section of our county. Grace is a devoted reader and actually saves my articles so she can look back and learn about our feathered friends. She was in California back in July and was able to see Ravens up close and personal. Grace was watching a pair of Ravens on a pole when a Mockingbird dashed out from a clump of bushes and demanded that the pair leave at once. After a little dive-bombing the Ravens headed for a much safer location.

During the fair I was able to meet Laura Beery who had a tale to tell. Laura had out five bluebird boxes, with only one Bluebird family that decided to stay. You must remember that Bluebirds are very territorial and will not tolerate another family of Bluebirds within sight of their home. With the chance of another family of Bluebirds moving in was slim to nada. Instead in a few days, Laura noticed something taking an interest in the other vacant houses. After further looking, she discovered four families of Tree Swallows. One way you can tell Tree Swallows are building a nest is to look for feathers inside.

I wish that I would have thought about gathering some feathers from the chicken area of the Wilson County Fair. Maybe sometime this week, Ill try to get back there and look for some. Also Laura had two Cuckoos fly into her window. One was killed outright, and the other was stunned and soon flew off.

I was asked probably a dozen times how to make the Hummer Juice. You take one part granulated sugar to four parts hot water, mix well and let cool. Please do not add red food coloring to the mix as their tiny bodies cant digest the stuff.

I would love to hear from you as to whats lurking about in your neighborhood and at your feeders. You can write me at 606 Fairview Ave, Lebanon, TN, 37087, or call me at 547-7371 or e-mail me at ourfeatheredfriends@yahoo.com

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