Thursday, August 30, 2007


California Quail Family in My YardFirst, sorry for the through-the-screen-door photo. Any movement would have freaked them all out.

At this very moment, I am looking out my screen door and I have in my yard:

* NINE California Quail
* approx FIFTEEN little brown sparrowy birds
* TWO Red-Breasted Nuthatches
* TWO Black-Capped Chickadees
* TWO squirrels

It's AWESOME! I haven't seen quail in town before, and here I have NINE in my yard. A few of them are smaller, like youngsters. I think there might have been a nest or two in the trees/pine needles surrounding my yard.

As a point of reference, my yard is only 200 sq. feet or so. I just happen to have really good stuff—all the best seeds, critter food, suet, and, as you can see in this photo, a makeshift birdbath. Although no birds are using it in the picture I linked to, I've seen upwards of ten little birds hanging out on the edges. They mostly drink out of it rather than splash around. The squirrel uses it too.

The reason I saw the quail this morning was because one of the mini-flock was sitting on the edge of the bird pool, just drinking. The quail are so much larger than the little sparrows that the movement really caught my eye. I'm glad it did! I believe I said "holy crap! is that a quail?" to no one in particular. Max, my cat who was sitting next to me, looked up at me like "quail? whatev. It's not like I can go outside." Deuce was sitting on the ottoman, snoring away. So much for sharing the joy of quail.

[The garbage truck just drove by and scared them all off, but they'll be back. Once the wildlife finds my yard, they tend to stay.]

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