Due Date- Wednesday, July 20- "Watch the Birdie!"
Traditionally, I've given mini science projects for one of our summer homework assignments. In the past, we've studied our flora by growing herbs and by planting fruits and vegetables. Now it's time to give our fauna a little equal time. I'd like you to do a little project on your local birds. Once again, this is a very open-ended assignment. You can do as much or as little as you like. I'll be sending you some links to help you get started learning about the birds in your area. I'll also send you some inexpensive ideas for feeding the birds if you'd like to do that. You can try and get a photo of some of your new feathered friends or you can just do some research and link to a photo. As I tell my students, don't let your brains turn to mush just because it's summer. Who knows... this might turn into a new hobby for you and your family.

july topper

goldfinches at their feedersI am a BACKYARD BIRDWATCHER. I'm not the kind of birdwatcher that dons the boots and grabs the binoculars for a hike in the woods. I'm the kind that wants to look out the kitchen window and see the goldfinches at their feeder, the black-eyed juncos on the ground picking at the spilled seed and the hummingbirds dipping into the sweet nectar they love so much.

There's this ugly phone pole in my backyard that I put to good use by hanging my finch feeders from it. The gorgeous goldfinches don't seem to mind the phone pole at all and are here all day, every day and are a delight to watch. I hung a new feeder a few days ago that is clear with yellow trim and it's taken them a few days to accept it but finally I see them feeding from it. The other green feeder I moved to front patio.

Did you know that finches also like to feed on the center of daisies and cone flowers? Mine do. I began noticing some bent and/or broken stems on the daisies and was wondering why. Then one day, I happened to glance out the kitchen window and three finches were in the daisies just picking away. Today I see them in the cone flowers. Didn't know they did that so that's this years surprise.

bluebirdMy dream, however, is to one day see the bluebirds again. They came once, on March 23rd, the day of my Mom's funeral. There's little doubt in my mind that She sent them just to let let me know she was safe and sound in her new heavenly home but just the same, I would love to have them come back again.

bird feeder front feederOne of the very first thing I had to do was reduce the sparrow population in my yard. Instead of the 'no mess' birdseed from Wildbirds Unlimited that I usually put in the feeders, it's now filled with bluebird food from WU. You can make your own mixture of bluebird food but I seem to have lost the recipe so for now I'm buying it. I hung another feeder on the front patio so if they aren't attracted to the backyard one maybe the front yard one will do the job for me.

resident bluebirdsUntil my dream comes true, I'm happy with this little pair of bluebirds that are permanent residents here. They don't need any food or water to drink. They just smile at each other and look pretty in my garden.

bluebird pix from sandyMy sweet classmate Sandy, sent this picture she took at her in-laws in Aiken S.C. Isn't he just precious? She gave me permission to post it on my July hw page. I'm so thrilled to have it! I just love bluebirds and my hearts desire is to attract them to my yard some day. She sent a link to a bluebird information page and all kinds of info about how her in-laws attract them to their yard.
Sandy wrote that: They have a real log (probably 2 ft long, and they have it hollowed out in the middle, then they fill this up with peanut butter, and they drilled a hole at the top of it so they could attach a chain to hang it. Guess even our feathered friends like peanut butter. Dahli loves it too! :)
Thanks so much, sweet friend! I so appreciate all the good stuff you shared with me.

Some of my favorite places for birds, birding and bluebirds.
penguin bird Birdwatching Quiz penguin bird Kirtland Bird Club animated bird nest

report card
Thanks, Teach!
july award

I didn't visit my classmates this month due to a family funeral. In August, I plan to read both July and August hw assignments and hand out my awards then.