The Big Quiet

Lochaber is all about summer. The cottage people begin arriving in the spring, properties get spruced up and wharves get resurrected. The first boaters appear on warm afternoons and the rowers are out at dawn. Traffic on the road increases and kids start swimming. Evening bonfires add atmosphere and the smell of  BBQ flavours the air.  Fishermen fish, gardeners garden and everyone mows their lawns. Festivals and family parties are many. Everywhere there is life and activity. And then it slowly winds down. Most of the wharves come in and lake activity diminishes. The last to leave are the rowers. I miss their early morning chanting. There is a brief flurry of hunters. The days get shorter. And the big quiet sets in……….. Hardly any cars……… The lake freezes……… Life hesitates…..

Time to get a little life started again. Put out the bird feeders. Make another suet feeder by drilling big angled holes in a log, filling each one with solidified fat drippings and hanging it up in view of a window. Buy some Black oil sunflower seeds and Black Niger seeds for their holders and set them out. Its fun to make you own. The building supply stores sell 1/4 inch mesh hardware cloth that is perfect for Black Oil seed feeders. The Bluejays can’t swat the seeds out wasting 3/4s of them but are forced to pull each seed out individually.  A Niger feeder can be made by taking any empty can , poking small holes in the sides and some bigger holes for dowels. Now there is always life outside my windows. Common birds come and go, rarer birds produce an ooh aah and occassionally there is a ########I can’t believe it.

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Squirrels and racoons had not yet crossed the tin barrier.

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Squirrels are a challenge. I started out putting Mazola on the copper pipe stand. It was great fun watching the squirrels get half way up and then slide down like a fireman; until they wore off the Mazola.

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then I added the coffee can. See…I’m smarter.

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A simple Black Niger feeder.

(For the next few weeks, Harriet MacMillan and I are going to post some bird feeder bird lists from the Lochaber area on the Nature Corner …with pictures. The first list will be the most common birds…..the next less common….and the third the real super sightings. We also hope to have a 2013 winter sightings list that all can submit to…so keep posted)

 

 

 

 

Squirrels are a challenge. I started putting mazola on the copper pipe.

It was great fun to whatch

 

One Response to The Big Quiet

  1. Bert Harris (Stearns) says:

    Really enjoyed this article Paul!

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