Sunday, April 26, 2015

My Backyard "Community"

I have quite a wildlife "community" happening on and under the feeder station in my backyard. Lots of House Sparrows and Starlings, unfortunately (both invasive species who have squeezed out -  and have even led to the extinction of several species - native songbird species across the continent and are vermin as far as I'm concerned), but also lots of Finches since I added the Finch sock full of Thistle seed - Goldfinches, the red-headed House Finches, and two Pine Siskins who drop by occasionally. But I also get some occasional surprise visits - one or two Chipmunks, the Eastern Cottontail rabbit pictured here, the Red-winged Blackbird (the first one since I set up the station), and a mating pair of Mallards who drop by every Spring. The following pictures are representative of what I see every day when I look out my kitchen window. Enjoy!

Here's a handsome fellow! And he knows it, too.
Mr. & Mrs. Red share the feeder station with some female Goldfinches
I looked out the window one day to see Peter here enjoying the spillage under the feeders
This male Red-winged Blackbird has been visiting a lot lately

Mr. & Mrs. Mallard drop by every Spring
Finches R Us!
© 2015 by A. Roy Hilbinger 

Monday, April 20, 2015

April Showers, April Flowers

We've been having some fairly warm weather lately, and last night into early this morning we had some serious rain, so things are really blooming in Central PA. I went wandering the streets of Shippensburg this morning taking in the Spring colors. Enjoy!

McLean House is taking on some seasonal color
And next door, Branch Creek is starting to look festive, too
Cleveland Flowering Pear trees on Neff Ave. brighten up a cloudy morning
A bright splash on Queen St.
Looking out Baltimore Rd. to South Mountain
© 2015 by A. Roy Hilbinger 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Is It Spring Yet?

Well, well! Spring finally looks like it's creeping in around here. The temperatures are definitely warmer and Spring colors are starting to show. Not to mention some critters are appearing who either migrate or hibernate in the colder months. Yes, it's finally starting to look like Spring around here. I took pictures yesterday and today in the Dykeman Spring Nature Park to document the progress. Enjoy!

My first sighting of a Painted Turtle for the year, sunning on a fallen branch in the wetland
The woods along the wetland are definitely greening
The creek is getting festive, too
Corn Speedwell growing along the Upland Trail near the meadow
The forest floor along the Upland Trail
© 2015 by A. Roy Hilbinger 

Friday, April 10, 2015


It's been pretty damp here in Central PA for the last three days - off and on showers and drizzle. Combined with temperatures above freezing, this has gotten the green started in coloring the landscape. I went through the Dykeman Spring Nature Park on the way to the grocery store this morning and got some nice, wet photos. Enjoy!

© 2015 by A. Roy Hilbinger 

Sunday, April 05, 2015


Spring is advancing, and the Earth is stirring. Green has begun to emerge from the brown and gray, the earliest flowers have begun to bloom, and buds begin to swell into leaves on the trees. Mama Gaia is waking up after her long Winter sleep.

© 2015 by A. Roy Hilbinger 

Friday, April 03, 2015


I bought a Finch sock last weekend. For any of you who may not be familiar with it, a Finch sock is a coarse nylon bag filled with Nyjer seed, which Finches love. I put it up on Saturday, but they didn't discover it until yesterday. Both House Finches (the red heads) and Goldfinches have always seemed to like the Black Oil Sunflower seeds I keep in the flat feeder, and now with the Finch sock and the warmer weather the Finches are coming to visit in greater numbers. Wheeeee! The Goldfinches have really taken to the sock, but so far I haven't seen any House Finches checking it out, although I'm told they do like to feed from them. Maybe soon. Here are some shots from Wednesday and Thursday.

And an extra added attraction! It's raining today, and when I looked out the window I saw a busy scene - Mr. and Mrs. Red joining some Goldfinches at the flat feeder. Yup, Spring traffic is definitely picking up.

© 2015 by A. Roy Hilbinger