Starlings can be a problem especially on the suet. If you buy a feeder that the bird has to hang upside down to use, the starlings will be discouraged also, thistle feeders and feeders covered in mesh help.
----- Original Message -----
From: Deborah Clark
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Monday, December 22, 2003 6:17 AM
Subject: [VTBIRD] 360 day birds
I thought Larry and Mona had a grand idea here and would add my observations
in a similar context. We have similar feeders here our valley in Florence.
We are at the base of the eastern slope of the Taconic range, at the edge of a
mixed wood forest with a couple of open fields approximately 15-20 acres each,
under cultivation in a rotation of beans, corn and alfafa mix hay (current
crop) nearby. We have a wetland and pond across the dirt road which serves as
part of the source headwaters of the Castleton River.
We built this house in 1995 and have lived here since. Like Larry and Mona,
our feeders are also year 'round. The 360 day birds since 1995 include at
least a dozen (or more!) black-capped chickadees; similar numbers of goldfinches,
bluejays and mourning doves; two pairs of tufted titmice; one pair of
cardinals, one pair of hairy woodpeckers and one downy woodpecker. I may well have
left someone out but it's still dark outside this first morning of winter.
Our lists of seasonal visitors mirror those reported in other areas of
Rutland county, but with the recent snow we have been invaded by starlings. I use
the term invasion since their presence is viewed as such by the resident birds
listed above. At one point two days ago I counted 26 starlings swarming over
the feeders and generally taking over the place. These birds are not usual
here, and certainly not in these numbers and never before have we observed them
in winter. I am trying to be understanding, but they certainly do tend to
Happy holidays to all,
Fire Hill Road, Florence.