I tacked onto the bottom of my last For the Birds column the need to keep some dead trees standing as these “snags” are vital for birds. They provide homes and food for birds and other wildlife.
The day after writing the column I took a walk to Little Merganser Lake. I didn’t notice it while walking to the lake, but on my way back I noticed two chickadees going back and forth to a skinny dead tree. I stopped and watched for quite a while.
The birds, of course, were clearing out a hole for the nesting season. One would land near the hole, stick its head in, and emerge a few seconds later with a bill full of wood shavings. Then the other bird would immediately do the same thing. The two worked tirelessly for as long as I stood there and, presumably, much longer than that.
So, it’s clearly spring in the bird world and many species are picking out their homes now. If you have bird houses you haven’t put up yet, get them out there. If you haven’t cleaned out the houses from last year, do that now. The sticks, leaves and whatever else they used for nesting material last year should be cleaned out before the birds return.
It was a great way to end the walk. And I got some fodder for my next column.
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