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Author Topic: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee  (Read 9345 times)

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #60 on: September 05, 2021, 04:26:39 PM »

Chipmunk, 9-4-2021.
Caught this chubby critter while waiting for the appearance of the 3rd clutch fledglings.
We have several ground squirrels. But, this one has been porking out on the peanut
pickouts.

'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #61 on: September 06, 2021, 02:48:01 AM »

9-4-2021
Dad Jr. , CR- 39( so named, for his almost Indigo blue head and shoulders like his father's), visiting after 3rd clutch fledges and briefly return.


CR-40, his sister usually flys with him. She was out of camera's 'view', to the right.
Could they be the new 'Mom & Dad' for 2022?


Although, not the customary 'graduation' photo I'm usually able to capture.
This does officially close the 2021 nesting season here in our Cane Ridge backyard.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2021, 03:03:19 AM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #62 on: September 06, 2021, 02:55:24 AM »

The Bluebirds have hinted  of some 'surprizes' our way for the remainder of 2021. :o
 What could these be?

'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Linda M

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #63 on: September 06, 2021, 06:38:06 PM »

They are so beautiful; congratulations on a great season and thank you for sharing the photos!

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #64 on: September 07, 2021, 06:08:35 PM »

Why is the color blue so rare in nature?
By Mindy Weisberger 1 day ago


Feeling blue? That color isn't as common as you may think.
When you look up at the blue sky overhead or gaze across the seemingly endless expanse of a blue ocean, you might think that the color blue is common in nature.

But among all the hues found in rocks, plants and flowers, or in the fur, feathers, scales and skin of animals, blue is surprisingly scarce.

But why is the color blue so rare? The answer stems from the chemistry and physics of how colors are produced — and how we see them.

We're able to see color because each of our eyes contains between 6 million and 7 million light-sensitive cells called cones. There are three different types of cones in the eye of a person with normal color vision, and each cone type is most sensitive to a particular wavelength of light: red, green or blue. Information from millions of cones reaches our brains as electrical signals that communicateWhen we look at a colorful object, such as a sparkling sapphire or a vibrant hydrangea bloom, "the object is absorbing some of the white light that falls onto it; because it's absorbing some of the light, the rest of the light that's reflected has a color," science writer Kai Kupferschmidt, author of "Blue: In Search of Nature's Rarest Color" (The Experiment, 2021), told Live Science. all the types of light reflected by what we see, which is then interpreted as different shades of color.


« Last Edit: September 07, 2021, 06:21:39 PM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #65 on: September 07, 2021, 06:15:47 PM »

Why is the color blue so rare in nature?, continued

"When you see a blue flower — for instance, a cornflower — you see the cornflower as blue because it absorbs the red part of the spectrum," Kupferschmidt said. Or to put it another way, the flower appears blue because that color is the part of the spectrum that the blossom rejected, Kupferschmidt wrote in his book, which explores the science and nature of this popular hue.

In the book "Blue," writer Kai Kupferschmidt explores the science behind this elusive color. (Image credit: Courtesy of The Experiment)

In the visible spectrum, red has long wavelengths, meaning it is very low-energy compared with other colors. For a flower to appear blue, "it needs to be able to produce a molecule that can absorb very small amounts of energy," in order to absorb the red part of the spectrum, Kupferschmidt said.
Generating such molecules — which are large and complex — is difficult for plants to do, which is why blue flowers are produced by fewer than 10% of the world's nearly 300,000 flowering plant species. One possible driver for the evolution of blue flowers is that blue is highly visible to pollinators such as bees, and producing blue blossoms may benefit plants in ecosystems where competition for pollinators is high, Adrian Dyer, an associate professor and vision scientist at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Australia, told the Australian Broadcasting Company in 2016.

As for minerals, their crystal structures interact with ions (charged atoms or molecules) to determine which parts of the spectrum are absorbed and which are reflected. The mineral lapis lazuli, which is mined primarily in Afghanistan and produces the rare blue pigment ultramarine, contains trisulfide ions — three sulfur atoms bound together inside a crystal lattice — that can release or bind a single electron.

"That energy difference is what makes the blue," Kupferschmidt said.

Azurite is a copper carbonate hydroxide mineral known for its deep-blue color. (Image credit: Serge Briez/capmediations/Getty Images)

Blue animals' colors don't come from chemical pigments. Rather, they rely on physics to create a blue appearance. Blue-winged butterflies in the Morpho genus have intricate, layered nanostructures on their wing scales that manipulate layers of light so that some colors cancel each other out and only blue is reflected; a similar effect happens in structures found in the feathers of blue jays (Cyanocitta cristata), the scales of blue tangs (Paracanthurus hepatus) and the flashing rings of venomous blue-ringed octopuses (Hapalochlaena maculosa).





'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #66 on: September 07, 2021, 06:21:24 PM »

Why is the color blue so rare in nature?, continued

Blue shades in mammals are even rarer than in birds, fish, reptiles and insects. Some whales and dolphins have bluish skin; primates such as golden snub-nosed monkeys (Rhinopithecus roxellana) have blue-skinned faces; and mandrills (Mandrillus sphinx) have blue faces and blue rear ends. But fur — a trait shared by most terrestrial mammals — is never naturally bright blue (at least, not in visible light. Researchers recently found that platypus fur glows in vivid shades of blue and green when exposed to ultraviolet (UV) rays, Live Science previously reported). 
"But it takes a lot of work to make this blue, and so the other question becomes: What are the evolutionary reasons to make blue? What's the incentive?" Kupferschmidt said. "The fascinating thing when you dive into these animal worlds is always, who's the recipient of this message and can they see the blue?"

For example, while humans have three light-sensing receptor types in our eyes, birds have a fourth receptor type for sensing UV light. Feathers that appear blue to human eyes "actually reflect even more UV light than blue light," Kupferschmidt explained. By that reasoning, the birds that we call blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus) "would probably call themselves 'UV tits,' because that's what they would mostly see," he said.
Because of blue's scarcity in nature, the word for blue was a relative latecomer to languages around the world, appearing after the words for black, white, red and yellow, according to Kupferschmidt.

"One theory for this is that you really only need to name a color once you can dye things — once you can divorce the color from its object. Otherwise, you don't really need the name for the color," he explained. "Dyeing things blue or finding a blue pigment happened really late in most cultures, and you can see that in the linguistics."

Birds' brilliant blue plumage, such as that of Spix's macaws (Cyanopsitta spixii), gets its color not from pigments but from structures in feathers that scatter light. (Image credit: Wera Rodsawang/Getty Images)

The earliest use of blue dye dates to about 6,000 years ago in Peru, and the ancient Egyptians combined silica, calcium oxide and copper oxide to create a long-lasting blue pigment known as irtyu for decorating statues, researchers reported Jan. 15 in the journal Frontiers in Plant Science. Ultramarine, a vivid blue pigment ground from lapis lazuli, was as precious as gold in medieval Europe, and was reserved primarily for illustrating illuminated manuscripts.

Blue's rarity meant that people viewed it as a high-status color for thousands of years. Blue has long been associated with the Hindu deity Krishna and with the Christian Virgin Mary, and artists who were famously inspired by blue in nature include Michelangelo, Gauguin, Picasso and Van Gogh, according to the Frontiers in Plant Science study.

"The relative scarcity of blue available in natural pigments likely fueled our fascination," the scientists wrote.

Blue also colors our expressions, appearing in dozens of English idioms: You can work a blue-collar job, swear a blue streak, sink into a blue funk or talk until you're blue in the face, to name just a few. And blue can sometimes mean contradictory things depending on the idiom: "'Blue sky ahead' means a bright future, but 'feeling blue' is being sad," Kupferschmidt said.

Blue’s scarcity in nature may have helped shape our perception of the color and things that appear blue. "With blue, it's like a whole canvas that you can still paint on," Kupferschmidt said. "Maybe because it is rare in nature and maybe because we associate it with things that we can't really touch, like the sky and the sea, it's something that is very open to different associations."

Editor's note: The article was updated Sept. 7 to reflect that lapis lazuli is mined in locations other than Afghanistan, though Afghanistan is the main source of the mineral.

Originally published on Live Science.

Mindy Weisberger

'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #67 on: September 10, 2021, 06:56:59 PM »

From the archives of  The Cane Ridge Bluebirds

We hadn't been bluebirding but a few years when we decided to document our resident blue avians.
 I was still using my Cannon camera in 2011 when we started to photograph the nest activity. Everything I photographed was printed on paper from the usual
negatives (which I stll have, somewhere  :-\).
Jim was still flying corporate aircraft for a private lable pet food manufacture. He was gone, alot untill 2010.
It wasn't until  2012 that I upgraded to digital Nikon camera. Later, I found using my smart phone to take the bluebird snaps more convient and easier to transfer to my desktop
computer.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2021, 07:03:40 PM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #68 on: September 10, 2021, 06:57:08 PM »

Highlights from the 2016 nesting season.
 The blue avians were faithful to their  natural 'timetable'.   Keeping tabs on our BBs was a learned discipline.
We missed a few events.  :'(


Taken 5-2-2016
The egglets will be,  Cane Ridge  21, 22, 23 and 24 !
« Last Edit: September 11, 2021, 12:00:35 AM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #69 on: September 10, 2021, 06:57:20 PM »


Taken  5-18-2016
Welcome to the World CR-21, 22, and 23!
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #70 on: September 10, 2021, 07:03:19 PM »


Taken 5-24-2016

Now we have CR-24.
The kids are all present and accounted .
Mom and dad were busy that season as new parents. The grandchildren of the original 'Mom and Dad Bluebird'
We soon learned the the parents usually stayed two or three seasons and left. With a pair from a previous season returning to make
their home with us.
However, there was a pair that stayed with us  year 'round for several years.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2021, 12:00:12 AM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #71 on: September 16, 2021, 01:12:44 AM »

The Bluebird Menu:

These cheery song birds usually eat grasshopper, beetles, spiders, crickets, and caterpillars.
And, a few side dishes like, flies, ants, wasps, moths, weevils. And, to the delight of homeowners---termites!

We’ve found spying with our binoculars, that during nesting season the amount of collected insects collect is much higher than some experts report.   The hatch-lings need lots and lots of protine  and this is the best source for our sweet babies.
Food is usually spotted from our ribbon elms, willow and redbud trees all within a few feet or Nesting Box #1 and #2. Our BBs are often seen in our front yard  pricking the lawn . There have been several occasions in earlier seasons with fledglings educating them in how to hunt and forage.
Upon a rare occasion, I’ve seen them catch insects in mid-air  as is the true fashion of tree swallows.

Some statistics* for feeding nestlings are:
 caterpillars-32.4%
grasshoppers-25.6%
spiders- 11.3%
Sometimes earthworms are fed to older hatch-lings. But I have read  that this can cause a bad case of  diarrhea
* Sialis.org
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #72 on: September 16, 2021, 01:12:54 AM »

The remainder of our BBs diet consists of small fruit from native shrubs  like our  Common Privet, English Ivy (Hedera helix) in our deck rail planters,  and Persian Lilac.  We have noted that a wider selection needs to be provided and plan to plant a few more next spring. Keeping fingers crossed that the economy improves...alot!
They also eat, flowering dogwood, holly, mulberry, wild grape, pokeweed, Virginia creeper and Viburnum. Either picked right from the plant or from the ground below.

'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #73 on: September 16, 2021, 01:13:10 AM »

Here’s a full list what to plant for our charming Eastern Bluebirds as provided by Sialis.org
It is noteworth to mention that multiflora rose, is a highly invasive plant and should not ever be planted.

Autumn Olive - see Elaeagnus
    • Barberry, especially Japanese (Berberis thunbergii), also European (Berberis vulgaris)
    • Bradford/Callery Pear - Pyrus calleryana - recent cultivars bred to reduce splitting are not sterile and are invading distrubed areas in the eastern U.S.
    • Cherry Silverberry - - see Elaeagnus
    • Chinaberry/Umbrella Tree/Persian Lilac (Melia azedarach L.)
    • Chinese Tallow Tree (Sapium sebiferum or Triadica sebifera)
    • Common Privet (Ligustrum vulgare) and Japanese (L. japonicum)
    • Cotoneasters - some like Franchet (Cotoneaster franchetti) and silverleaf (Cotoneaster pannosa)
    • Dwarf Mistletoe (Arceuthobium spp.)
    • Elaeagnus: Russian Olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia), Autumn Olive (E. umbellata), Cherry Silverberry (E. multiflora), Thorny Elaeagnus (E. pungens)
    • English or Cherry Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)
    • English Ivy (Hedera helix)
    • Honeysuckles (11 species listed in some states) especially Japanese Honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica), also Tatarian Honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica)
    • Leatherlef Mahonia (Mahoni bealei)
Morrow Honeysuckle (Lonicera morrowii) and their hybrids
    • Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora Thunbergi)
    • Porcelain Berry (Ampelopsis brevipedunculata (Maxim)
    • Russian Olive - see Elaeagnus
    • Oriental/Asiatic Bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus Thunb.) - bright orange berries along the length of stems - American Bittersweet is not invasive
    • Thorny Elaegnus see Elaeagnus
    • White (wild) mulberry (Morus alba) - white berries




Above: Western bluebirds eating Tonyon berries. Photo by Leslie McCulloch of California.
Below: Eastern bluebird fledgling eating Pokeweed. photo by Dave Kinneer of Virginia.


« Last Edit: September 16, 2021, 01:23:09 AM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale

Phyl

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Re: Bluebirds of Cane Ridge, Tennessee
« Reply #74 on: September 16, 2021, 01:15:12 AM »

“The best thing you can do to help bluebirds have a healthy, varied diet is to landscape with native plants that produce berries throughout the seasons, and avoid using pesticides (which kill insects and can harm or kill birds), and place nestboxes in the right habitat for hunting. Eastern bluebirds prefer semi-open grassland habitat, such as mowed meadows, large lawns, cemeteries, orchards, roadsides, and areas with scattered trees and short ground cover. Areas with fence lines, some medium size trees, or telephone lines provide perches for hunting and nest-guarding. Western Bluebirds tend not to favor large, open meadows.”
 From Sialis.org
    • Guinan, Judith A., Patricia A. Gowaty and Elsie K. Eltzroth. 2008. Western Bluebird (Sialia mexicana), The Birds of North America Online (A. Poole, Ed.). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; Retrieved from the Birds of North America Online: http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna/species/510 doi:10.2173/bna.510
    • For those who want to reduce the use of pesticides, starting a bluebird trail in agricultural areas like vineyards can be a great addition to an Integrated Pest Management Plan (which minimizes the use of chemicals and relies more on natural alternatives.)

    • Migratory Bird Treaty Act - This law did not go into effect until 1918. It prohibits collection of native birds without a permit.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2021, 01:23:43 AM by Phyl »
'Which is more beautiful — feline movement or feline stillness?' Elizabeth Hamilton

'A man who never sees a bluebird only half lives.'
Edwin Way Teale
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