...bird feeder gone. Oh where, oh where could it be?
I used to have my bird feeder on the inside of the fence, as seen below. It was a long way from the nearest tree. I wanted to be able to see the birds up close and keep the squirrels from getting into it. Squirrels and dogs don't mix.
What I inadvertently did, was set a table for my local Cooper's Hawk. With no place to hide, the little birds were sitting ducks (no pun intended, as ducks and chickadees aren't related really) for the hawk.
I moved the feeder outside the fence, under the closest tree. I knew the squirrels and other critters could get to it, so I resigned myself to bringing the feeders in at night. I've seen a raccoon try to get seed out of the globe shaped feeder. While amusing for me, it was something I knew raccoon would take on as something to conquer. The squirrels had already taken to amusing me during the day with their battle to get seed out of the feeder.
With all wild animals, once there is a constant source of food located, they revisit the place daily/nightly.
The one time I forget to bring in the feeder, here's what I wake up to.
My shepherds crook is bent and one of my feeders is gone. I don't mean just down off the crook, I mean gone. It is no where around. Upon closer investigation, it looks like the deer have been cleaning up the ground under the feeder. What I suspect happened, was one of the big bucks got his antler stuck in the feeder while trying to knock seed out of it. By the looks of the hoof prints in the ground, he pulled and his antler wouldn't budge. He pulled harder and was only able to free himself when the crook bent.
The thing is, none of the bucks that come up daily for a handful of corn, have that feeder stuck to their head.
The kicker is, I have searched high and low on my place for the feeder. It is no where to be found. I can only guess that he carried it around for a bit, got tired of being teased by the other bucks for being so stupid as to get hung up in the thing, and shook it loose.
I was able to straighten the crook, with a little work. I moved it just inside the fence this time. I've given up on worrying about the critters that want food, and just hung up a platform feeder.
I can't be labeled a "species-ist". I feed all animals equally now. I'm even feeding the darn House Sparrows. Some battles just aren't worth fighting.