Few birds are happier in the company of man than the house sparrow, and for much of the year it is rare to find them far from human habitations. Sparrows are very adaptable, they have been found living and breeding 2000ft underground in a coalmine; and others have been recorded living their whole lives inside warehouses. They have even swam under water in some instances to escape predators. They are quick to learn new feeding habits, soon adapting to taking food from suspended nut feeders, a habit first noted in the late 1960s. They are very sociable birds, often nesting in colonies, and most pairs will try and raise at least two and often three broods a year. But The population of sparrows has been declining, as there is... continued below
ess food for them, because of fewer gardens. They are now on the threatened birds’ list in many parts of the world. Possible explanations for the decline include modern agricultural practices that leave less waste grain in the fields as well as the increased use of pesticides in urban gardens. While the oldest living age of a sparrow is recorded at over 13 years old, the survival rate for the young of each year is less than 25%. Over 40% of all adult House Sparrows die each year. The sparrows are a very spunky and hardy bird that many of which live a hard wild life. There are many dangers to the sparrow from predators like cats and hawks to poisons and now even cell phone towers pose a serious degradation to the sparrow population.
“ Bio conservation activists and experts have given a call for providing space and facilities for inviting sparrows back into human habitations so that the most ‘human-friendly’ bird will not face threat of extinction. Being classified as a general bird, sparrow doesn’t fall in the list of wildlife birds as it is not sighted much in forests....” from http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/tp-andhrapradesh/cellphone-towers-posing-threat-to-survival-of-sparrows/article4531912.ece continued....“A little space has to be provided in the midst of our concrete houses. Otherwise, the sparrows will slowly disappear,” said B. Anusha, president of the Bio-Conservation Foundation (BCF). She made an appeal for providing open water pots in the premises of houses and buildings to attract sparrows. Big trees and food grains should be made available. Wooden boxes have to be provided for the convenience of these small birds.
The extinction of the dusky seaside sparrow was caused by habitat loss. “from wiki” The largest source of human-related bird death is due to glass windows, which kill 100–900 million birds a year. The next largest sources of human-caused death are hunting (100+ million), house cats (100 million), cars and trucks (50 to 100 million), electric power lines (174 million), and pesticides (67 million). Birds are also killed in large quantities by flying into communication tower guidelines, usually after being attracted by tower lights. This phenomenon is called towerkill and is responsible for 5–50 million birds deaths a year. And : in 2015, biologists working for the state of California estimated that 3,500 birds died a single solar plant in the span of a year, "many of them burned alive while flying through a part of the solar installment where air temperatures can reach 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
I cant' imagine a world without sparrows, yet the world is without certain ones already. Even with 150 million sparrows estimated in the United States alone, is the loss of one bird acceptable? Does the more humans that are alive mean that each one life is worth less living? Is the sparrow not important because there are many and they are so familiar? What is important to us, to continue blindly unaware of our actions on the lives of sparrows and other animals, or to become aware and adapt. The reasonable man adapts himself to the world, one famous quote says. I feel we should all try to be more reasonable.
These little guys got a personality, they are smart and have a more complex means of communication. There are up to 8 sounds in a single word.. More and more I can identify with them and the other wild life as I observer and interact.
They aren't wild as in the normal definition. They are merely emotionally independent from humans and physically too even though we feed them sometimes. And they put safety first. These guys have a totally different "and better" value system. The emphasis is basically in this order. Safety from predators or cars or any danger, then food, then communication, then sex. The communication actually centers around safety, food and sex, but takes up a lot of their time. What is different about their value system is that it ends there. there are no legal system, no technology, no jobs, or money to worry about, the earth provides their needs. In many ways I am admire their simplicity and intelligence in living, But there is more. Their pastime other than what I mentioned is something that if I could do, I wouldn't stop doing it, it looks so fun. It's called flying. and they are good at it. The remaining little time is left to take care of the feathers, bath and of course rest.
Sparrows are the closest animal in a general sense to humans. They are close in the sense that they are near us and depend on us to a degree. They have other similar traits as they form communities and they are concerned about the safety of the others as well as themselves. Sparrows could live without humans, yet they thrive with the help we provide. From nesting spots to extra food, humans play an important part in the sparrows life.
But sparrows need no technology and do not even need fire nor the means to make fire. Which the means to make fire is the oldest and most primitive of technologies. Because of the way sparrows conduct themselves, they make very little mess, only a nest and droppings which take care of themselves. The nest is biodegradable, yet sometimes can be a nuisance to humans if built in an awkward location such as a vent.
There is competition among sparrows and a great deal of their communication is built around this. They communicate about the same three basic values their lives are centered around. These are safety, food and sex. The female is submissive to the males, but the males compete among themselves. The exact details of this competition I have not fully understood, but the males will physically subdue the female when it comes to sex and the males will simultaneously compete against each other for the role of male sex partner. Their competition for food is similar, but less dramatic as they argue among themselves and then they will show physical aggression to determine the eating order.
I wonder what else we can learn from the sparrows and other animals that can benefit our outlook and way of life. Rybird
No, this is not a recipe for a bird salad., but for the attracting and maximizing the cardinal experience.
Redbirds as we call them in the south, are Northern Cardinals and are small birds that are easy to spot the male as he is bright red or orange. That is why we call them redbirds. They are hardy creature, lively and sing and are generally happy. Because people are attracting them to the backyard with feeders the population is no longer in decline. Reportedly it was in decline along with many birds due to the decline in gardening.
Here are some tips for a good experience attracting and keeping redbirds.
A bird feeder is one of the easiest ways to attract many birds, and cardinals love sunflower seeds. Just the sunflower seeds along will keep them around. They do eat a variety of other seeds that are found in bird mixes and they eat flowers from trees like the Crepe Myrtle and the buds of the Tallow Tree. They also eat the red berries from the Holly bush. These red berries is what initially brought them around our home. They need caratonoids for the red color. Caratonoids is the pigment found in many plants they eat. The female redbird is not bright red like the male, but is a lovely brown and olive more earthy color theme that is very beautiful closer to them.
Redbirds love to eat off the ground, but I suggest a raised platform that is a couple feet from the ground to protect from insects, mold, cats and other hazards. This platform should be a surface that isn't very slick as they need a grip for their claws, so a very small wooden table would do as in an end table.
I use a metal frame with wood insert end table about 16” high that the top is about 10 by 12 inches and they love it. Just sprinkle about a half cup of seed twice a day for a few redbirds and watch them be happy.
Other birds as sparrows like this feeding arrangement too, but many birds such as the chickadee and finches prefer a hanging feeder. But if you are a redbird fan, you should be able to improve your experience by feeding them on a platform. They love to have other objects nearby such as lawn chairs, however there is a danger of their claws getting caught in the webbing and causing serious injury.
To maintain the feeding area, the feeder should be washed at least once a week to prevent mildew and mites. A mild soap and bleach and strong rinse will keep the mildew down and rid it from any mites. Also the sunflower shells fall to the ground and if not cleared away will pile up and eventually start composting. I suggest moving the table, or feeder before this as mites, bugs and mold will otherwise accumulate. Other than stocking the feeder, and keeping it and the surrounding area clean is keeping it away from cats and hawks. To determine the best spot, simply look around and avoid areas close to thick bushes cats hide and wide open areas that hawks can swoop down and safety is too far for the birds to get shelter.
Birds have wings and know how to use them, so this isn't necessary, nor is a bird bath, but I do suggest both if either, simply because then they have all their needs met in one area. Keep the bird bath clean and fresh, and out of hot sun as the sun can heat the water up to dangerous temperatures for the birds.
Clean it the same way as the feeder with soap and water, or mild bleach solution to kill any algea or mildew and thoroughly rinse.
Finally for the best experience with the vibrant redbird, is to get a camera , take some pics and share them with your friends. Not only will they enjoy it, but by looking at the pictures you can often see potential health problems as they arise. One might be an injury that can't be noticed while they are flying about, or damage to feathers from mites. This can go along ways to avoiding any serious problems.
The last suggestion for now is simply to be somewhat consistent in feeding them as they are the first and last birds to eat, eating early in the morning and late in the evening right before dark.
For more about the Northern Cardinal including sounds, photos and videos, see Cardinal Delights at:
The bird is the word.
tags: redbird, northern cardinal, cardinal delights, information about redbird. wild birds, backyard nature, birding, redbird pics, redbird care, caring for wild birds, Rybird
Learning from the animals.originally posted 8/10/2014 Rybird
Many times I have seen or heard humans comparing humans to animals, often in the context of criminals or people that have gone against the acceptance of society. I see or hear phrases such as “They are no better than a animal.” or simply, “They are animals.” To better my understanding of animals, I have watched the local animals with an open and thoughtful mind. I have discovered that there is no inferiority of the animals to humans, nor is there any inferiority of humans to animals. Animals have social order with laws and consequences just like humans do, yet their motives seem to be more innocent. Perhaps we notice humans that have deviated outside the acceptable behavior that we believe should exist and cannot tell very often that animals also deviate in what many humans call a sin. Not to go into a religious commentary, but the definition of sin that I am using here is the one of doing something that is not approved of by the being committing said act. With that said, I think animals do not perpetrate ill motivated behavior unless there is an illness or disease at work.
Animals need to survive and nearly all of the behavior that I have observed is centered around this. Whether eating, sleeping, or procreating, animals behaviors are geared toward accommodating their basic needs. Going outside of my own observations for a moment, I know that giraffes will fight to the death over territory. It is not just the territory at risk, but what the territory affords and the alternate territory does not provide, which is the means for survival. It is not a fight for a better waterhole, but having a waterhole at all.
I have observed the birds form communities and families depending on the species and rely on others for increasing their chances at survival. Most animals are easily observed as social animals, although some orders such as insect have a variety of patterns and it can be hard to see any socialization. Ants are easy to see that they have a community, but dragonflies seem more solitary. This does not change their motives for living and how they behave as individuals. It is still motivated by the basic needs that insure survival.
It is now easy for me to understand that animals are not inferior in any way to humans, but some things such as religion and worship seem hard to identify in animals as their communication differs enough from ours to impede that understanding. However, turning that around, I can see that religion in humans is just as much about territory in this context as anything else. It is not about geographic territory, even though that is involved as it is about social territory. It is about grouping humans with similar values together through a belief system which is incorporated in the pertaining religion. Since I cannot communicate on that level yet with animals, I do not know what their internal or social belief system is. It very well could be a belief in a power greater than themselves, or that some believe and others do not like humans do, or that it is either completely different or non-existent. But I do understand animals have the same basic instincts and will to survive as humans do.
I can see that each species of animals has a unique way among themselves to communicate, yet each can understand some communications of other species. For example the cardinals sing and chirp complex high frequency sound phrases to each other, while the sparrow do the same. But the cardinals and the sparrows are not affected by each others communication as it is in a different language. Then there are universal languages such as yells, screams, and calls that alert or warn all species that could be affected by a threat.
Animals showing compassion is easy to see with dogs, since their compassion is often geared towards humans but others are very caring about their offspring or members of their immediate community. It is simply short sighted to compare a human criminal to an animal, or even groups of warring humans because animals are as innocent as the most socially healthy humans.
I will continue to watch and interact with the animals to hopefully learn more. I also find peace in knowing that animals are not lessor creatures than humans. I enjoy time with the animals, or as Mark Twain put it in Eve's diary, “I couldn't get back home; it was too far and turning cold; but I found some tigers and nestled in amongst them and was most adorably comfortable, and their breath was sweet and pleasant, because they live on strawberries. “
Now I must go outside so the birds can watch me.
A Vision for You
Named after a chapter on spiritual awakening in the big book of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Mix of originals and derivative works for one hour. Varied energy level ambient to electronic rock.
One non-stop track consisting of the following sub-tracks/mixes.
0:00 to 3:10 Taurus Shadows by Rybird
3:10 to 10:30. Halcyon Khu Reprise by Rybird
10:30 to 14:45 Beyond Netherword by Rybird
14:45 to 20:05 Mix of Beneath Reactor Number Three and Operation Dragonfly by Rybird
20:05 to 22:50 It's all Good by Rybird
22:50 to 31:50 Lemon Lime Noise Twist by Rybird
31:50 to 36:15 Empty Spaces mashup
36:15 to 37:00 Empty Space/ An Exercise in Futility mashup
37:00 to 41:25 An Exercise in Futility by Rybird
41:25 to 44:45 Empty Space Mashup
44:45 to 47:40 An Exercise In Futility by Rybird
47:40 to 51:00 An Exercise in Futility. Rocking the DMV
51:00 to 55:00 Her Other Secret by Rybird
55:00 to 57:20 An Exercise in Futility Mix
57:20 to 1:00:00 Sanguine
Remix of Empty Spaces by Pink Floyd mixed in parts of the background. Note: Empty Spaces is a new performance mix based on many part of many parts inspired by Pink Floyd and is including during track changes and during tracks at sporadic times, Thus only the main track names and times are listed.
Visit Rybird Lunar for more orbiting art.
Blog of Rybird with stories, behind the scenes and features of music, art, photography, and spirituality. Creativity and Inspiration along with some personal experiences.