Outdoors with Jim Collins: Updates and observations
We got a lot of information from readers regarding how to attract Baltimore Orioles; all good stuff and worth passing along. One of the truly rewarding perks of writing outdoor columns is that folks readily share information.
Turns out that one can purchase a hanging feeder for orioles. It is covered and has two containers, similar to jar lids, to put in grape jelly. Every reader who responded wrote about using grape jelly; no special brand. They even mentioned using the cheap stuff, whatever brand that is. In addition to the containers of grape jelly under the roof, each end has a hook on the outside to hang an orange slice. We plan to buy one of these and have it ready for 2015. One reader stated that they have theirs in place by April 30.
We have been seeing and hearing Baltimore orioles in our yard and all around the little borough of Alba. Once the trees leaf out, you will not be able to see their hanging basket nests. But if you can identify their vocals, which once heard is not forgotten, you will know that they are here. An added bonus for us is that we have observed orioles in our flower garden on several occasions. They do eat a variety of insects and thus they are welcome visitors. Since we have had several sightings and vocals in the last two weeks, we know that Baltimore orioles are definitely nesting all around us. We will be able to find the nests in November when the trees go leafless.
Another reader wondered if blackbirds scare away hummingbirds from their feeders? The answer is a definite NO. Hummingbirds are not intimidated by other birds; they can out fly and out maneuver any bird. Another bird that is not intimidated at our feeders by other birds is the chickadee. I have stood next to our sunflower seed feeder when I see a flock of chickadees. If one stands quietly, the chickadees will land just a few feet from you. That was a wonderful lesson the first time I thought to try it. The same bird made three flights while I was there. Chickadees usually take a sunflower seed and fly into the nearest tree to crack it open on a branch. Neat stuff for sure.
Get outdoors often and enjoy what God has given to us for our benefit.
Jim Collins is an outdoor columnist for The Sunday Review. He can be contacted by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail at Outdoors with Jim Collins, HC, 1: 87 Windfall Road, Alba, PA, 16910.