Your Holler Friends~

Check out the critters who dropped by The Holler in the last week or so.

Grosbeaks are building nests all over Hollerdom.
Red winged blackbirds are new arrivals and are hopefully nesting too.
The orioles own the place, and their distinctive hanging nests are up and going.

Yep, we put out a snoopy toddler pool for wildlife watering.
Wily E. sniffed it a bit and helped himself mid-day, soon after we filled it! Cheeky wily one.

Osprey came to check out all the action.
Maybe he followed the bald eagle.

One Ceanothus Moth typically shows up each year, usually in May. This one was early and had a five-inch wingspan!
Cheers to your from your Holler critter friends~

285 thoughts on “Your Holler Friends~

    1. It is odd. We typically get one of these gorgeous moths a year and they land on our back window screen, and stay for a few days. This one is a month early. I wonder if we will get more than one this year.

      1. He is Wily E. He couldn’t survive all the human hatred, unless he is smarter than us all.
        I do want to see what he will do with the tennis balls.
        I suspect he will ignore them.
        But not before sniffing them and pushing them around a bit with his snout.
        πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰
        But let’s see.
        I am adding tennis balls to my grocery list.

  1. Wow, you have quite a few one-of-a-kind photos here… red-winged blackbird, osprey – yeah they’re certainly new to me! And now maintaining a pool for coyotes and other guests! It’s like a resort for all the critters out there. What a generous thought Cindy! <3 ~Lynn

    1. You would love all the birds out here Lynn. Literally hundreds just outside my office window. They keep up a constant hub of activity. The orioles are stripping palm strings to make their woven nests, all the birds are eating , bathing, nesting, squabbling. The Holler is definitely for the birds!

      1. Yes, you know I would Cindy! Until I get myself out somewhere like The Holler, I’ll continue loving stories from you! I’m finishing that book on parrots in the wild and have gained insights on what various bird species might be like according to their nesting behavior. Would love to get out into the great outdoors and apply my knowledge to other species! πŸ™‚

      2. The parrots are the most accessible to humans vis-a-vie their intelligence because they can speak human languages, plus they are freaking smart.
        Science is now gloaming on to Raven intelligence, woodpecker memory. Flocking behavior is being seriously studied for essentially telepathic communation. Scientists have now, finally, begun referring to birds as “feathered apes.”
        According to science, we are top of the food chain, predators.
        But birds are ancient, and effectively evade us.
        What does that make them?
        Smarter than us.

  2. Excellent photography. In high school, we had resident red-winged blackbirds who regularly dive-bombed us students. It happened so frequently that our rival school ridiculed us relentlessly. The dive-bombing always occurred near the entrances of our rectangular shaped school complex where there were lots of bushes and trees. This shrubbery included one ubiquitous specie which prolifically produced a bright, toxic (to humans) red berry. Adults told us the birds were consuming these berries and getting “high” which made them act more aggressively. I don’t know if that’s true, but the dive-bombing behavior was very regular and didn’t appear to be exclusive to the bird’s nesting cycle. It was a little annoying, and at times comical especially when new students would transfer in from other schools. The poor kids would often panic when the birds came after them… lol!

    1. Wow!
      Blackbirds getting high at your school. I am surprised the principal didn’t put them on detention and force them to attend after school DARE training. Sorry, couldn’t resist! πŸ˜‰
      Besides being druggies (which I didn’t know until you just told me) they are also one of the most promiscuous of bird species. A single male may have as many as 15 female mates and he will vigorously drive off all intruders, including humans who get near them. This probably also makes them cranky, just think 15 wives. They are known to be quite defensive birdies. We’ll see how they deport themselves at The Holler. It is not possible for them to out aggress the hummers.

  3. Such a heavenly place, Cindy! These birds and Wily E. know you love them. πŸ™‚ I have never seen colorful moth like this one.
    Fabulous captures! Thank you so much, Cindy! πŸ™‚

    1. The moth is the strangest thing. One moth, each year, stays on the back window screens for a
      couple of days and then flies away, like clockwork, each May. Except for this year, when this one arrived early.

  4. Hi enjoyed the wonderful pool with its esteemed Wily Coyote. I wonder if it were hot, would he jump in?
    I liked the very different birds and 5 inch wing-spanned visiting moth. I like how you say there is only one each year. πŸ™‚

  5. I made some adjustments yesterday to my post delivery system. I wasn’t getting yours at all unless I went to my reader, which I don’t do often. You’ve been languishing there and I was missing all the good stuff if this is an indication. Wow! Those are some great photos!!! I couldn’t pick a favorite.

  6. Your photographic expressions bring ecstasy to my eyes!!! That moth is gorgeous, if u can comfortably say that about a mothπŸ™„And the osprey and birds…BUT MOST OF ALL THE COYOTE HAVE A REFRESHMENT BIA YOUR SNOOPY POOL!!! Love him or her..goddess bless I got providing water for them…😘😍❀️

      1. Yes!!! That pool is perfect!!! I leave birdseed for the doves and blue jays and crows that sit on the lines above out pool…last year a dove gave birth in the palm tree in our backyard!!! That was a seemingly strange location but they all seemed to make it and now they too swoop I for the morning buffet.. I love caring for just about every living thing..including fishing drowning bees

      2. Out of the pool…I just feel part of them when I help care for of life and all that rotπŸ˜‰πŸ˜ŽπŸ™ŒπŸΌπŸ˜ΈπŸ‘πŸ½

      3. Yes!
        One finds their true importance through others.
        Doing this for you and me, seems an essential task, connecting us all birds, animals, humans. Actively engaging in it like you are doing is an amazing gift.
        As we see and protect the beauty in wild creatures, we cannot fail to recognize and want to protect the beauty in ourselves.

    1. Oh, I am so glad you love the coyote. It took me living with them to wise up about them, get over the stereotypes and my fear. They are hated in much of America which is ignorant. They are similar to wolves and share much common DNA. They are intelligent and highly adaptable. They thrive in harsh conditions. At The Holler they are very healthy because they eat a lot of rodents and calves. They hunt in packs like wolves and co-operate.

  7. Your wild e is like our urban foxes in his cheek. Good at this time of year when the Cubs come and play on the lawn. About the fab butterflies how are your butterfly populations? Ours seem to be diminishing at an alarming rate in the UK through a combination of lost habitats and climate changes

    1. I love your foxes and photographed them extensively last year both in London, yes London in a Duke’s walled garden, and in Ireland. They are so beautiful, with such strong family bonds. In London I photographed a family with two kits over several days. Gorgeous and so playful.
      Coyotes seem halfway between a wolf and a coyote. They share a lot of DNA with wolves and are larger than foxes. They are incredibly adaptable, and can survive in a variety of harsh habitats. They are merciless predators and are hated by many Americans. When I first moved to The Holler I was stupid and very afraid of them. Now, I respect them as I do any wild creature.
      Yes, our butterflies in the US are diminishing, although you can’t tell at The Holler. We have huge populations of honey bees, butterflies and moths.

    1. I am so very happy that people are saying nice things and liking the poor maligned coyote. I used to be stupid and terrified of them in the huge packs they live in out here. Living with them for eight years now, I have learned and am no longer so ignorant. They really are incredible, intelligent, wild creatures and formidable hunters. Thank you Sally for supporting them. They need support.

  8. I totally adore Your Holler critter friends Cindy and they are all so gorgeous! Love the fact that you put out a little pool for the wildlife. That is so amazing! Wiley E definitely enjoyed that! What a beauty it is! Thanks for sharing. πŸ˜€ β™₯

    1. I know they live and breed in the wild lilac (ceanothus) that blooms all over here. We typically go away in late April so maybe we miss them, but I have only seen one every year usually in May when we return. This one is early which makes me wonder if we might get more.

    1. We used to have grizzlies here. In fact the largest grizzly in the US was shot here in the 1890’s. I wish we hadn’t killed them all off. I would love to have them here, it would spice things up!

    1. No, we have had rain and so I have not had much chance to use the new camera, except for practice shots. With the practice shots I am not seeing too much difference, even though the new camera is more than twice the cost of my existing one. Tomorrow there will hopefully be sun and I can take them both for a extended try out. I’m gonna look for that eagle!

      1. I saw a difference between my D750 and the Sony A7 if you can believe that. I almost felt the Sony was too sharp lol. Not sharp enough, too sharp, it’s not me it’s the camera!!! πŸ˜‰ Good luck finding the eagle. πŸ™‚

      2. Yeah, I was hoping for increased sharpness. Tomorrow will tell. If I don’t get it, I can relax about using a less expensive camera. I sorta felt guilty about that. We are funny aren’t we? Too sharp, too cheap, these are our complaints. <3

  9. Wow Cindy these are awesome shots. Can’t believe the fox, he must have been one thirsty fellow to smell human and still take a drink.

    1. He’s bold in that he lets me take photos in broad daylight. Often while birdwatching, I will surprise one and they startle, look at me for a few seconds, and then trot off. I think they know who I am.

      1. I don’t think you can judge one photo vs. another. I hate the Olympics for this reason, they are all incredible athletes. I love your photos and am especially entranced by your winter and ice photography where you live. These photos transport me. I love them.

    1. It grows on you. When I first moved in, I had nightmares about rattlers, black widow spiders, and coyotes, all of which we have in abundance. Now I have nightmares about civilization! πŸ˜‰

  10. Lovely shots, Cindy, though I confess the coyote scares me a bit. He looks sort of on the raggedy side, doesn’t he? And yikes, look at the beak on that osprey!!

    1. Yes, there are both formidable predators, of course no where near as ruthless as humans. We have several packs of coyotes out here, with a n of probably around 50 or so coyotes. When I first moved here, I was afraid of the packs. Now we coexist. Still I wouldn’t walk out here alone at night, no way.

  11. Mind blowing. Don’t know how you do it, both knowing each species and getting those photos. My favorite is how you provide water for the wildlife… Lovely.

  12. The Holler is really blooming and is a reat joy to see.

    Perhaps your new camera will show it’s worth with more difficult shots such as low light and/or fast shutter speeds. I hope it gives you ease of use at least. πŸ˜€

    1. I used it today and can’t see much difference and of course it lacks equivalent telephoto. We are crossing the pond again in a few weeks and I am hoping it will do better in non-zoom city situations.

      1. I hope it proves worthwhile and you have a good trip. I’ve alerted the ports and ordered a tidy-up for your visit. πŸ˜€

        Unfortunately some of the best places to photograph, like the Buckingham Palace State Rooms, are not available for photography. I’m sure you’ll find plenty of others though. πŸ˜€

      2. Well, if you could put in a good word re: photographing the BH State Rooms, I would surely appreciate it. I would reciprocate for any member of the Royal Family wanting a tour of The Holler.

    1. We very rarely have deer because there are so many coyotes. But today, in the oak grove, I was watching birds, when a deer walked right up to me unaware of my presence, when it finally saw me, it panicked and bolted straight for me. I did the only thing I could do in this situation which was take photos! He veered off at the last minute. I thought he was going to hit me.

  13. I love your moth and the toddler pool for wildlife. I did the opposite – I used a kiddie pool to keep raccoons off of my bird feeder. The birds want to eat too, and the raccoons already had plenty of goodies on the ground. Love the pics!

      1. Oh it is way stranger than that. I turned it upside down, made a hole in the middle, and slid it over the pole with the feeder. It sits under the feeder held up by a bracket and acts as a baffle to keep the raccoons from climbing up the pole. Not the most attractive setup, but I finally found something that works!

    1. I know many people feel this way. They are an essential part of a normally functioning ecosystem. Both species keep rodents and snakes in balance which I so appreciate.

  14. Beautiful photos, Cindy! Thank you for your many visits to my blog…I do appreciate your presence! I have been a bit overwhelmed with LIFE…and not reciprocating visits as I should. You always have beauty to share! I shared your post on my FB and Google Pages. When I read about the Orioles and their “distinctive hanging nests”—I recalled an NPR program I was listening to while driving yesterday. The lady presenting was speaking about her new book, GENIUS OF BIRDS…she was saying how birds plant seeds in thousands of places and can REMEMBER where they stored the seeds and retrieve them! I am not sure of the spelling, but from my listening I thought her name is Jennifer Ackermann. I thought you might enjoy the book if you can find it. Have a great day and thank you again for your many visits and likes on my posts! Blessing to you!

    1. I would enjoy the book and will try and find it. Science is now bursting with published studies on bird intelligence. Scientists are studying their cognitive abilities, communication skills, memory, navigational abilities, their emotional intelligence cross species, their “awareness of self in universe,” and their ability to synchronize flying with hundreds of other birds. (They are actually looking at non-verbal, read psychic communication to explain the later). Scientists are referring to birds as “feathered-apes.”
      It seems to have taken them a long time to finally catch up, but I am just glad they finally are.
      Thank you for your thoughtful re-blogs and your kind comments and no worries about visiting. Unfortunately sometimes, life sometimes does have priority over blogging! πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

  15. Wonderful photos. It’s impossible for me to pick a favorite. We live in a suburb and hear coyotes at night. A few have been spotted in the neighborhood. The orioles and robins have made their appearance here.

  16. So beautiful, Cindy. I always share your photos with hubby and keep saying I’ve got to get a camera like yours. But I’m not naive enough to think it’s the camera! You have quite the talent. Love the coyote shots and the distant shots of the Holler in the background!

    1. So kind Linda. Thank you my friend. I hope you do get a camera. It really encourages one to live in and appreciate the moments of their lives. Be well my friend~

      1. most certainly so! the only reason I even spotted the male high, high up in the tree was because he was singing like he was on American Idol πŸ˜€

      2. Laughing….. This year we have a whole bunch of them which I am so happy about. The females are largerr than the males, and when they plop themselves into the feeders, no one else can fit!!! πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

  17. EGADS!!!! I’m in love with Wiley Coyote at the kid’s pool. Your shots are beyond beautiful! I may have already commented, but I don’t care, because…. EGADS!!!
    Also, I’m doing 12 hour days right now, I’m wildly exhausted, and everyting is a blur.

    1. I thought the Snoopy bit was wildlife sensitive and I am so glad you agree Resa! πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ I am hoping the mountain lions will want to tak a closer look at Snoopy-dog. Cheers to you Resa and sweet dreams~ <3

  18. A long time ago, I remember seeing one of the oriole nests which are so unusual. The birds are beautiful but this time the scrawny coyote captured my <3 , Cindy! The swimming pool of water for Wily E. or friends is so nice of you to do. πŸ™‚

    1. I have learned to value and coexist with the Wily E’s. When I first moved here I was scared of them and of the rattlesnakes. Now I just step over the rattlers, and take photos of the coyotes! The Holler has learned me good! πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

  19. The spring song out your window must be like a whole choir rejoicing. I adore listening to the birds. I installed a water dish for the deck railing near a feeder. So far daily sparrows and a few chickadees one day last winter. Nothing as colourful as you see, but I love their songs. It’s totally awesome that you’ll put out a pool for Wiley or anything else wandering by, I love that ! x B

  20. Bonsoir CINDY

    Quelle est belle notre amitiΓ©
    Elle est pure
    Elle est un lien
    Mon amitiΓ© ignore les indiffΓ©rences
    Elle n’est qu’un charme d’un verbe aimer
    Elle Γ©veille le sens de la bontΓ©
    Elle supporte la charitΓ©
    Mon amitiΓ© est un charme que du verbe aimer
    Mon amitiΓ© est faire de sincΓ©ritΓ©
    Belle soirΓ©e et belle fin de semaine
    Bises , Bernard

  21. What a lovely place you are living in, Cindy. So much wildlife! The moth is amazing! And so is the red-winged blackbird and the coyote…

  22. Pingback: Your Holler Friends~ β€” –

Leave a Reply