"Don't wish me happiness I don't expect to be happy all the time....It's gotten beyond that somehow. Wish me courage and strength and a sense of humor. I will need them all." Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Taming the towhee

The Rufous sided towhee is a secretive little bird. It spend's it's time scratching amongst the fallen leaves and needles under the shrubs in the yard. In the winter I have suet hanging near some shrubs and typically they come and feed off it when we are inside the cabin. Once we are outside they magically disappear into the bushes only to reappear once we are back inside. But all of this changed when I was cleaning out a cupboard and found some stale peanuts. My daughter shelled them and we began leaving the peanut's by the suet. Towhee's love peanuts and very quickly they were able to associate us with the treats. Unfortunately much of the firewood I paid to get bucked up was cut too long so this winter I have had to saw it down to size in order to get it into my woodstove and I do this with my bucksaw. I do this task on the back porch. The female towhee which is a chocolate brown - (the male's are black) figured out where I was so when she hears the saw she comes looking for a handout. (If it is too windy than she doesn't come because she can not hear me) I toss her a peanut and she picks it up in her beak and hops away into the secret sword fern hideaway for her peanut picnic. For me this has really brightened a necessary task. In a few minute's she is usually back again. All of the towhee's are very tolerant of my four year old who with the upmost enthusiasm delight's in tossing them peanuts. Occasionally they have caught the peanut in mid-air. There is much joy to be found amongst the simple companionship of wild birds.

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  1. There's magic in the simple interactions we have with nature, isn't there? I love moments like this...Happy New Year my friend. May 2017 be blessed for both you and your daughter and filled with many, many more sweet days like the one you describe.

  2. I loved reading this. I have towhees here, too, in fact, they are the most common bird in my back yard. I wonder if I could get them to know me. I think the hummingbird knows me. When I took the feeder down briefly he came to the window looking for me!

  3. Such a special relationship with the birds and animals you are able to cultivate in the absence of people around. I'm sorry that you are having to cut up your wood in the dead of winter after having paid for it, that is awful, but I know you are just making the best of it. How wonderful that the little towhee has become your friend!