Resident Racoon

A new animal set up residence in our backyard recently … a raccoon.

There are enough places for the coon to hide, especially under the barn.

The raccoon must be mostly nocturnal or have other small places to hide. The animals — foxes, raccoons, ground hogs take turns living there.

It stays close to barn where it can easily hide.

I wonder what it’s watching? Is it worried about another animal wanting a new “home?”

Our two-acre yard offers many places for wildlife to set up residence.

 

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Returning Bluebirds

The bluebirds moved into my yard recently.

They wouldn’t show up if it weren’t for their bright colors. They can be easy to see if they’re perched just right in the sunlight. They do brighten up a person’s day.

This picture was taken the same day as the ones of the bluebird. I can’t explain why the picture turned out like it did. The white lines in the foreground are strands of spider silk. The other finer strands are part of a spider web. What I don’t understand are the tiny round spots?

Cooperative Bluebird

This bluebird wasn’t hidden as much as it thought it was.

He reverses the direction for this picture.

The pale rust and pale blue blend in with its surroundings (squint and look at him.)

A different angle changes the shadow on the bluebirds.

Shadows help the bluebird to blend in with its surroundings.

Early in the Morning

My morning started with birds visiting our yard. The sun cleared the hill behind our house, and the birds became more active. I started taking pictures as the sun cleared the strip pit behind our house. I took pictures of the sunlight brightening the emerging leaves in the hackberry tree, the pine and the sweetgum trees.

The sunlight lit the few strands of spider silk and changed their colors to mostly orange.

I like the depth of the layered image of branches and new flowers emerging among them.

 

Chipping Sparrows

I see several birds daily now, even in the gloomy rainy days. Their numbers continue to increase.

The chipping sparrows stayed among the limbs, close to the trunk of the tree.

They were active birds. At least a couple of them stayed for me to photograph.

This one might see food or want me to go somewhere else.

 

Resting Owl

I was taking a slow walk around the backyard yesterday afternoon.

  It was a calm, quiet day

with only a few birds: robins, a blue jay, a cardinal, and … an owl.

 Only the owl wasn’t really an owl. It was a broken limb in the sweet gum tree in our backyard.

It looked like an owl resting near the end of the limb.

I do so like owls of all kinds.

A Cooper’s Hawk

Our days have been cloudy and drab for weeks.

I sat in the recliner beside the window in the livingroom.

I had to turn around a little more than usual to see in the north side of the large oak.

… and there was a Cooper’s hawk, searching the limbs for birds to eat.

Cooper’s hawks are accipters — meaning they eat other birds. They’re also larger than the sharp-shinned hawks.

I  sat in the rocker-recliner beside the window. The males are considerably smaller than the female Cooper’s hawk, and the ends of their tails are squared.

The hawk landed on this branch and stayed there for quite a while.

It was a Cooper’s hawk.

(All these pictures were taken of the same hawk)

The huge oak grows across the highway from our house and can be a bird magnet.