Old Red Jacket Talker

Just an old RCMP dispatcher’s ramblings . . .

Is It Already Time?

As I was out sitting in the back yard enjoying some of our fine summer weather I was interrupted by a loud squawking above in the sky. Now I do have a purple martin house in the yard and have had a couple pairs setting up ‘house’ throughout the summer so I’m used to the martin’s squawking. However, this was a loud louder and a way more noise than normal.

It seemed like every martin in town came over to visit today and they were circling above my yard. Nope it wasn’t excessively busy with mosquitoes or anything like that and this was about 1:00 p.m. It took me a few minutes and when I glanced at the calendar I knew what was happening.

Yup the martins are getting ready to make their move to southern climes. Already? Gosh it just seems like we started summer and here the birds are getting to leave us for the winter months. By checking back a few years I see that the martins usually start to get ready to depart about this time of August. They are one of the first birds to make the migration south so this is not any earlier than normal.

I hate it when they start to get ready to leave though as I know we are getting the end of our summer. Hopefully though we will have a grand September and October. The good part about that is that usually the mosquito population also takes a nosedive. But in all honesty the mosquitos were not too too bad this year. Maybe a few more than normal, but nothing too bad.

Yup it is closing in on the middle of August and it is that time of the year once again – ‘Already’! 😦


August 9, 2011 Posted by | Birds, Weather | Leave a comment

Scary Thoughts

For the last week or so the sky around town has been full of geese. There is a field of peas just on the edge of town and the geese have found it and are delighted in filling up on the peas for their long jaunt south. Sometimes the air is just black (and white) with the geese trying to get the best landing spot checked out. Of course they are very vocal as well when they are trying to land and when they are landed and feeding.

The one strange thing I have found for the last couple of days is that when I’m heading out bright and early in the morning; I’m hearing chick-a-dees chirping away. Now what the heck are they doing this far south at this time of the year. Normally we don’t hear/see them until the middle of winter when it gets too stormy in the north. We haven’t even had a sniff of snow yet and in actuality the weather has been quite nice for the last couple weeks. No rain finally 🙂

I’m just hoping this is not a sign of what we are going to be in for this coming winter. Mind you the way our weather has been since last year, I certainly would not be surprised if we had a lot of snow and a long cold winter. Brrrrrrr

October 20, 2010 Posted by | Birds, Weather | Leave a comment

Getting Close To Spring

For the last couple of days we finally have been getting a bit nicer weather. The sun is actually coming out and warming up everything. The snow is melting and the roads are getting muddy.

But today I got another first of the new spring year and that was while I was doing the papers this morning a lonely goose came flying over the town just a honking away. Now this isn’t too unusual as there are geese that stay around the province all winter, just normally not in our neck of the woods.

This goose that winging by this morning was heading north at a good clip. So maybe it knows something we don’t 🙂

March 16, 2010 Posted by | Birds, Weather | Leave a comment

Left Too Early

I think the purple martins may have gotten mixed up this year (or at least I’m hoping so). For the last week or so the martins have been grouping up for their normal departure for the south.

Bright and early Thursday morning (ie 5:30 a.m.) while I was delivering the papers I noticed no squawking of the martins when I got near their houses. I didn’t see a one all through town when normally there are literally hundreds.

This morning while doing the papers I did hear a few martins, but I believe these were just stragglers. The rest have departed for warmer climes.

Our weather forecast for the next few days is just wonderful as the temps are to supposed to be up in the low 30’s. So either the martins know something that us humans don’t or they headed to the south a little too early 🙂 I would think the heat has nothing to do with their departure time though. Looking back a few years it would appear that normally the martins depart somewhere around August 12th, so this would be right on schedule for them to depart on the 14th.

I’m just hoping we get a few more weeks of summer weather or rather maybe we can get a few weeks of what should be summer time weather. We sure haven’t had a lot of typical warm/hot summer weather yet this year.

The other thing I noticed when I was out at just after 5 a.m. is how dark it is out then. The days are just slipping by and every day we lose more and more daylight. We all know what that leads to and I’m sure not really looking forward to the ‘white’ stuff just yet.

Hopefully we’ll have a super nice fall that extends to about mid December 🙂

Well you can always hope can’t you?

August 16, 2008 Posted by | Birds, Hanley | Leave a comment

Fall Is Coming If the movement of the purple mart…

Fall Is Coming

If the movement of the purple martins is any indication, then fall is on it’s way. As of Thursday August 16th all the martins in town have departed town and are presumably heading southwards. This is about normal for the martins as they normally depart about the 15th of the month. This year I think the martins took a bunch of their friends with them as the bird population is almost nil right now. I haven’t seen any gold finch, purple finch or just normal finches, or even robins for that case, around in the last couple of days. Heck even the sparrows are in hiding.

Now we’ll have to wait until the fall and winter guests show up to entertain at the feeders.

August 18, 2007 Posted by | Birds | 1 Comment

Satisfaction I know that today summer has finally…


I know that today summer has finally arrived. As I was sitting outside watching my BBQ supper sizzling away I saw a northern oriole come have a sip from my feeder. These birds are very skittish and the least little noise sets them off and away they go into the closest tree. I did manage to get a video albeit not much of one as I think I blinked too loudly… sheesh. They are normally the last birds to arrive in the spring and the first birds to depart in the fall.

Another visitor to one of my feeders today was a male ruby-throated hummingbird. I have seen them flitting around the yard the last week or so, but none had sat down for a sip from the feeder until today.

My purple martin house has 3 pairs setting up house and getting the yard organized. Then I have one set of tree swallows nesting in one of my bird houses in the back. Of course I have lots of American goldfinches visiting the feeders everyday to get a snack or two. Today I also had a morning dove come by for a short visit and took a tour of the sunflower feeder. Of course there are a couple robins who have set up nests in the trees along the side of the house and are forever whizzing back and forth from the lawn to their nests. I also have had some chipping sparrows visiting the feeders and checking things out. And of course I do have a family of song sparrows that have set up a nest in one of my other bird houses. I’ve cleaned the house about 4 times already, but they are very determined and as soon as I climb down from the ladder the birds are hauling nesting material back into the house.

As well when I was sitting on the deck trying to get a picture of the oriole, a little house wren landed about a foot from my hand on the deck railing. It took a quick look at me and decided I was bigger than he/she was and decided to make tracks for the juniper bush along side the house.

For the amount of bird action, I finally know that summer has finally arrived.

About time!

May 27, 2007 Posted by | Birds | Leave a comment