Recreating a native habitat has been a dream of mine since I was about 18. It only took me 20 years, but I finally have two acres of land in the country with which to work (and play). My goal is to document the improvements I make to the property: restoring habitat & attracting birds and butterflies in addition to other wildlife.
Just the back yard!? Nah, I want the front and side yards landscaped in natives too.
I don't know if I have just not been watching, or what, but I haven't seen hummingbirds here for quite a while. So, imagine my surprise when I saw one right outside my window several weeks ago (when the Penstemon digitalis was finishing up).
I encountered this little lady again, yesterday, while walking past the trumpet vine (that I inherited from a previous owner--it has only begun to bloom over the
past two years.
Coming around the corner, I must have startled her...she took off ahead of me--probably the only reason I noticed. Luckily, I had my digital
camera with me, and I zoomed in to snap some pics when I saw her alight on a branch of an elm tree.
I am glad to be seeing this little lady visiting...
and I hope she brings her mate and their friends--or their rivals...
I know how territorial they can be.
While searching my archived photos, I stumbled upon a video that I didn't even recall taking. This is from a cherished encounter that I posted back in 2014. Having this footage, allows the magic of that encounter to be relived again and again.
Years ago, I was taking pictures of a frog that was under my deck. After a while, I got this feeling that something was behind me or something was watching me. To this day, I don't know if I actually heard something or just sensed it.
I wasn't expecting to see anything, so, when I turned and came--nearly--face to face with a fawn, I let out a gasp. The gasp startled the curious, little fawn. It jumped back a bit. It had startled me...but had I not reacted like that, I can only imagine that we just would have looked at each other for a while. I tried snapping some pictures with my (get this!) flip phone. They came out rather blurry.
The mother, seeing her fawn so close to "that strange man" huffed, calling her fawn to her.
Here is the ending of that most amazing encounter:
Work on Phase II of my pond and streambed project has been very sporadic since buying a liner several years ago and starting breaking ground on Christmas day of 2015 (I believe. I can't find a post about it). I guess my focus had been on the meadow--I figured the meadow was a much larger expanse than my pond...and I wanted to transform the yard big time. The meadow progress has had its own pitfalls...hopefully I will post about that at a later date.
This spring, as I was looking forward to (longing for) summer vacation to start, I decided that this had to be the "year of the pond". I cannot wait any longer. I'm not getting any younger. I am--somehow!--turning fifty this year!
Anyway, I have started, again, digging Phase II of my pond which I left undone in 2016. I can't believe that I did not post here a few days ago--last week some time, when I came in exhilarated from the progress I had made. My soil is loose and digging has been easy. It feels good. Makes me feel young. :) I am confident now that I will fill it with water long before summer is over. How I will manage to hide the liner and make it look as natural as possible is yet to be seen...but, I hope to do that as well.
My husband, Jeff, surprised me by researching pumps and filters while I was out digging. We ended up ordering the pump, two filters, and a corrugated hose. :) They arrived the other day--and, yet, I still didn't post! :-O
Getting pictures uploaded from my phone to my blog has been a deterrent. So, here I am finally back on my desk top...hoping to have access to the photos I want to add.
This long rambling post doesn't do justice to the feelings of joy I feel knowing what a huge asset this pond will be to wildlife--and to my own peace of mind. I love water. I always have, I think. I am drawn to ponds, lakes, and streams. Having one in our own back yard--and all that it attracts is something I have wanted for 'forever'. I am shocked and dismayed that it took me so long! It seems so easy (so far) and the benefits immense! :)
(Pictures to follow--still having trouble accessing them.)
Surprisingly, spotting a luna moth on our property, this evening, was not enough to get me to post...it should have been (I'm thrilled), but it took another (near) encounter to get me to pull up my blog and share:
Although robins are quite common, and I rarely get too excited about them except maybe in the spring (although they are very welcome), over the years, I've noticed in a couple of photographs I've taken of them, that they can seem quite stately.
They are a welcome sight after our long winter. I am happy that they are comfortable around human habitation, and, although still a little wary, they often give me a chance to take some nice photos of them.