|Baby Baltimore Oriole waiting for food|
Recently he brought his big yellow babies up to feed too. Now they are preparing to fly south. The nesting season is over for lots of birds. As the morning bird chorus slows down, the sounds of summer switch to the buzzing song of the Cicadias'.
Summer is the season for insects. Unfortunately with so little rain in the Lansing area this year, a lot of birds are still supplementing their diet at bird feeders. The blackbirds, which usually leave the feeders to search for yummy bugs in the lawn didn’t leave.
|Am. Robin digging under the feeders for spilled nuts and seeds|
These hot, sultry days of summer in the Northern Hemisphere are called the Dog Days of Summer. According to John Brady’s Analysis of the Calendar in 1813, this is believed to be an evil time when "the Sea boiled, the Wine turned sour, Dogs grew mad, and all other creatures became languid; causing to man, among other diseases, burning fevers, hysterics, and phrensies."
|Am. Goldfinch eating Canada Thistle|
The Old Farmer's Almanac lists the traditional timing of the Dog Days as the 40 days beginning July 3 and ending August 11, coinciding with the rising of the Dog Star, Sirius. These are the days of the year when rainfall is at its lowest levels.
The American Goldfinches have just started their nesting season right now. They wait for flowers to go to seed. Grasses, Milkweed, wild Canada Thistles and other weeds are important to goldfinches, as a source of food and as raw material for their nests.
Then we come out of the Dog Days into my favorite time of year! By mid-August you'll wake up every morning to the tinkling tune of baby goldfinches!
- What's the Best Way to Attract Orioles http://bit.ly/NBDZ0F
- What to do if you have too Many Blackbirds at the Feeders! http://bit.ly/PZYRGw
- Cicadas buzzing at night? http://bit.ly/NBDT9r
- What do American Robins eat? http://bit.ly/PZXoA0
- Goldfinches: The Last Birds Nesting http://bit.ly/NBERlZ
- Nyjer (thistle) isn't related to Canada Thistle http://bit.ly/Nt8Xxu