Archives

Magic on Wings~


Like the hummers, we have flown away,

to a place where wi-fi doesn’t fly.

I can’t get a satellite signal consistent enough to upload,

here in The Cook Islands.

But, I am getting stunning island vistas.

Sending Holler Hummer hopes that you are healthy and well,

and looking forward to connecting with you when we fly back to civilization.

Until then, cheers to you from the incredible Cooks~

Colorful Creatures~


Create their own vibrant light.

Phaninopepla, dark as midnight,

in full light, is radiant dark blue, with deep red eyes.

Male orioles, kings of beauty, rock yellow and black,

while male grosbeaks flash black, orange and white.

Mr Jay will drive our blues away,

as hummingbirds fly their own private rainbows!

Cheers to you from The Holler’s colorful creatures~

Common Folk~


Are underrated. (Click and enlarge to see the tiny details).

Like this Holler bathing birdie,

a California Towhee, who isn’t much impressed with the paparazzi, smart birdie!

This yellow house finch has a deformed beak and foot, but is doing well on Holler handouts.

Male yellow house finches are less successful with the ladies than their ruby colored cousins, but I think the ladies lack vision.

Mocking Birds may be common,

but they are oh so smart, and very handsome.

House finches are everywhere,

but are really quite adorable!
Cheers to you from The Holler common folk~

Blogging at the Holler’s for the Birds!


I was sitting at my desk, just getting ready to post on birds of the far southern hemisphere, when I looked up and there walked Big-Bob! (All new critters at The Holler get names.) So instead of birds from the far south, you’re gonna get critter action from the Holler’s wild-west.

Of course Big-Bob, a great egret, doesn’t belong here. He belongs at the lake, but this is one of the many things I love about birds, they don’t follow human directions, and they pay no attention to where ornithologists say they should be.

Anyhoo, I grabbed my camera and followed Big-Bob. He was on a mission and unfortunately lizards were on the menu. Meet Fred.

Fred knows us. He is a very large, very old alligator lizard, but he got much smaller when Meep-Meep, the roadrunner, relieved him of his tail, which he is diligently trying to grow back, and resting a lot accordingly. He is also molting which makes everything worse, poor Fred.

Fred is now understandably wary of all large birds. He took one look at Big-Bob and bolted to safety. It was a good day for Fred and Big-Bob, but a not a good day at all for poor Little Lizzy!

You may see Flash the hummer in this photo flying close to observe the predator-prey interaction. Flash lives with us year round and some of you may remember Flash. I have lots of talks with him about staying away from large predator birds like Meep-meep and Big-Bob who like to eat hummers, but as I mentioned before, birds don’t listen to humans, so you can see Flash buzzing Big-Bob like nobody’s business.

So, instead of cheers to you from the birds of the far south,

it’s cheers to you from the hungry Holler’s wild-west-critters~

New Sony RX 10- IV~


Yesterday my new camera arrived and I have been practising with it, taking first photos around The Holler. (Click to enlarge the bees to see the details).


It is getting detail and is super fast, but will require more practice.

I was planning to use the camera mostly for landscapes, so I was pleasantly surprised with these first-attempt macros.


You can see some of the detail capability in this Datura or Moonflower. Moonflowers are night-blooming and belong to the nightshade family. They are poisonous and are pollinated at night by Sphinx and Hawk Moths. Native Americans used Moonflowers in sacred ceremonies as a hallucinogen.

These Night Blooming Cereus flowers were taken with my older, trusty HX400, which is still my go to bird and wildlife camera. The flowers grow on the tallest cactus in the world, Cereus Peruvians. Ours is over 30 feet tall! It’s flowers are as big as plates and open only at night. The tree generates tons of fruit called Peruvian Apples that are crunchy, sweet, and delicious!


Cheers to you from Sony’s views~

Shy Guys~


Check out some of The Holler’s shy guys like this very skittish Yellow Breasted Chat.

Black Phoebe’s are some of my favorite birds.

They sleep under our porch roof all year and will not budge from the perch in winter. It’s too cold to move!


They are avid people watchers.

Acorn Woodpeckers are extremely shy at The Holler, and hard to capture, because they have large oak groves to select acorns from and rarely bother to visit the feeders.

They always seem to know where I am before I do!

Mockingbirds only visit the bird baths on very hot days.

This Scrub Jay is worse for wear. It looks like something, probably the Roadrunner, grabbed him by the neck.

But he got away and recovered, helped by copious quantities of Holler seeds.

Spotted Towhees are very rare Holler visitors.

And then of course we have very shy Squirrely who thinks he’s a bird.
Cheers to you from The Holler shy guys~

The Holler Spa~


I love The Holler Spa! First of all, they have an all you can eat buffet which I take full advantage of!

You get to swim in the spa pools, for as long as you want!

Few things feel better than being well fed and well bathed.

I especially like soaking my tail, it needs the extra moisture.

I could also use a manicure, but they don’t offer that here, which is a significant demerit.

But, there is nothing quite like a sunny day at The Holler Spa!

Unfortunately, they let the riff-raff in, like this very pushy thrasher.

The even more really-rude-roadrunner, thinks he belongs on the owner’s table!

The snobby goldfinch is so annoying. She is over prized by the owners, only because she scarcely ever bothers to show up here!
It’s a good spa, but the management could use some improvement.
Cheers to you from The Holler spa~