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Thursday, April 1, 2021

Hooded resident

I sat in the garden when I came home last night, decided to enjoy the unseasonably warm and balmy evening. 

I plunked my chair near the bird feeder for a while, enjoyed watching the spotted towhees scampering around foraging the ground for some seed that the piggy jays might have missed in the morning.

The ranchette smells so good right now. Jasmine, wisteria and orange blossoms all adding their measures to the sweet and symphonic olfactory cocktail.

It wasn't long until the newest migrant arrived on the scene, faster than a speeding bullet but less powerful than a locomotive. 

I didn't get a picture so you will have to visualize but take my word for it that the hooded oriole was about two thirds of its normal size and quite orange. Very slim. Last year I got pictures of four adolescent males cavorting around the yard at one time, this guy was a loner. Haven't seen a female yet. 

And while he might be young there is another possibility. The bird flew a long distance in his recent vernal trek, possibly from the farthest reaches of Mexico and Central America. Icterus Cucullatus is classified as a neotropic migrant and has prospered in many foreign areas thanks to the planting of non native fruit trees that they use for food sources.


Anyhow I just have to wonder how much body mass can be lost on such a long trip?

Hooded Orioles are also known as Palm Orioles. They love to build a nest hanging off a native Washingtonia filifera palm frond. Have been doing it around these parts since time immemorial.

My tree trimmer cut the fronds of the Mexican fan tree that they normally nest in last year, in a non requested over exuberance. Here is our newest visitor on top of a frond.

I hope that it is not too much of a hassle for them to build a new nest.

We have always had orioles here and I hope they can continue forever. Mine get a healthy scoop of grape jelly every day. A definite favorite friend and regal king in the garden.

Will be nice to watch them regain their optimal girth.


1 comment:

Jon Harwood said...

Nobody drains a hummingbird feeder like an oriole. They make up for it by their beauty.