Signs in the snow

While they don’t come around when we’re around to see them, there are plenty of signs that the deer are coming to the feeding station.

The snow was absolutely trampled this morning! You can see it all the way back to the corner of the spruce grove, before the tracks start splitting up into smaller trails.

Here, you can see their trail coming from inside the spruce grove. More tracks go through the gate and towards the barn.

We may not be able to leave much feed out – and the birds eat a lot of what we do leave out – but at least they know they can come here for a winter snack!

The suet we have right now seems to be a bust, though. When I bought it, the Walmart I found them in was out of stock except for packs with 3 different “flavours”. All mixes of seeds, nuts and fruit. Usually, the only ones I can find locally are basic seed mixes, or special mixes for specific birds. The brand is the same, though.

The individual packs were not labelled, so I don’t know which is which. The first one I put up was, as far as I could tell, completely ignored. Usually, the chickadees and nuthatches are all over it! After several weeks of it looking completely un-pecked at, I decided to put a different one in. I put the first one in the snow in the bird bath (which I am not trying to keep with water this winter; it is just too damaged for that, and I’m amazed it actually lasted another summer!).

Since then, I’ve seen Blue Jays on the bird bath, pecking away at that piece of suit, but none on the hanging feeder!

I’m thinking the larger birds don’t like the little feeder basket as something to land on, and the little birds don’t like these mixes, so they’re not bothering. Not with delicious black oil seeds for them to eat, instead! 🙂

The Re-Farmer

That looks like it’s toast…

While doing my rounds this morning, I was able to take a closer look at the bird bath.

Throughout the winter, when chipping ice out to add water, I’ve been very careful not to touch the bird bath itself. It already had cracks showing on it, and now that the ice is melting away again, I can see that at least one has gotten worse. I’m sure my ice chopping didn’t help. 😀

Yeeeaaahhh…. I’d say the bird bath is toast.

The kitties still like it! 😀

Since completing my rounds outside, it has started to snow. A gentle snowfall, just enough to start coating the trees again. It won’t last long. Looking at the long range forecast, we’ll be staying above freezing every day. By Sunday, we’re even supposed to hit 10C (50F)! It’s going to get muddy out there, but I’m looking forward to the warmth, and the snow melting away enough to be able to extend my rounds again.

The girls and I have decided it’ll be worth heading to the city to try and do our monthly shop, though I expect we’ll split it again, make a smaller trip and go back again later in April.

I should try and find some rubber boots again. Last year, I couldn’t find anything that would fit over my burly calves. 😀

The Re-Farmer


With the warmer weather we’ve been having, I noticed something about the ice that had build up on the bird bath. The warmed concrete had melted the ice touching it, and a gap had formed.

I took advantage of that.

Instead of cutting a bowl into the ice for water, I was able to chop away the build up of ice, without damaging the bird bath itself.

Once the edges were clear, the middle part came out in very satisfying chunks!

I cleared enough that the brick could be used by the smaller birds to reach the water.

Another sign of spring on the way!


The Re-Farmer

Photo(s) of the Day: what’s going on here?

When topping up the bird bath with warm water, I could see where the cats had licked a hole though the ice on the surface to get at the water below. The hole got bigger when warm water was added to it. Potato Beetle was absolutely fascinated by it. He kept prowling around it. Water and bubbles must have been sloshing on one side as he did, because he kept going from the hole, so a spot beside it. Eventually, he started dipping his entire leg through the hole, causing something to to move on the side, which would catch is attention. Back and forth he kept going!

It was quite entertaining. 😀

Photo(s) of the Day: water cats

Before things started to stay below freezing, I was able to give the bird bath a thorough scrubbing and add a bit of water. Which froze overnight, so I added more in the morning.

The cats just can’t get enough of that. Here, the top layer has frozen, so there are bubbles moving underneath that entrance them, but even while the water is freshly added, they’ll jump into it, getting their paws all wet!

Silly kitties.

They’re going to have to stop doing that soon, or they’ll get frostbite!


As the weather has gotten colder, seasonal changes are happening to our morning routine. With the outside taps now closed for the winter, and water starting to freeze, we are back to bringing out a pitcher of warm water to refill the cat bowls outside.

With the bird bath now moved next to the bird feeder (which I was able to give a good scrub down before winter – after knocking the ice out!), adding warm water to there is now part of the routine. Who knows. Even the deer might be able to use it over the winter. It doesn’t hold a lot of water, but we can refill it as needed.

This morning, the cats were wildly curious about what I was doing at the feeding station, and I had cats jumping up into the bird bath before I could finish emptying the pitcher!

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