Critters and birds

Bats, hummers, roadrunners, and quail A bird pond is an added bonus out here. The smaller animals need water as well as the chickens, dogs, and cats. I had an extra piece of pond liner and put it to use as a water hole for the birds and smaller animals. I dug a shallow wide hole in a level piece of ground. I lined it with the extra piece of liner and anchored the edges with rocks around the sides. Any shape will do, square round, oblong or a shape of your own making. I scattered some larger rocks through out the pond like stepping stones for the birds to perch on, these also help hold the center liner on place. The birds really love the pond, and they all chirp at each each other in the morning. Its a beautiful sound. I think of it as the morning coffee clatch. It also gives me a chance to watch the different diverse breeds passing thru or even staying awhile. Small snakes, quail, roadrunners, and what ever walking wildlife that comes thru at night all know where the water is. i refill the pond about once a week when i fill the other barrels so the water stays fresh. Sometimes i take the other pond liner filter out and clear some of the algae and debris that accumulates on the bottom over time. No chlorine is added to the pond. Its maintained naturally and works very well for the birds. I had no idea when i placed this that it would draw so much attention, i was basically looking for a way to water the dogs if the compound gate was closed to the kids swimming pool they usually use. The schedule seems to stay the same, early morning after sun up, and early evening before sun down. Its a beautiful sound to wake to in the morning. I set up some seed feeding also for the birds. Now its a happening kind of place. Nice to sit at the patio table with coffee and just watch. The hummers havent arrived yet but probably by the end of the month judging by the other breeds that have shown up. Soon after the birds set up domain the other birds like the quail and roadrunners found the pond too. Oddly they all seem to have their own scheduled time to visit. Late afternoon seems to be the preferred quail visits, the roadrunners show thru the afternoons. With the pond outside the compound fences the birds appear to feel safer and dont mind being watched. Its fun to watch the quail bring the babies in to drink and teach them about this water source. The roadrunners dont bring their young untill they are almost grown. I guess my biggest surprise at the the pond would have to the tadpoles. The frogs only appear at monsoon time when the ground is saturated, but they must be very busy in short time. We have cardinals that stay thru the winter now, but just the males. The doves are usually early evening feeders. Thinking about increasing the pond size this year, didnt plan for so much activity and its getting crowded out there now.

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