Monday, December 7, 2009


Talk about lack of perspective! I certainly lost it. Last night I woke up worrying about the wild birds I feed. They are precious to me, don't get me wrong, but it just doesn't help to lay in bed and listen to the wind, thinking about my birds and how they're doing out there in the extreme cold and wind. They are wild things, after all.

But I do know they benefit from my ministrations, so I keep the feeders filled and spread plenty of seed on the porch for the juncos who don't go up to the hanging feeders. A source of water is very important to their survival also, since they can't digest the birdseed without it. I keep a nice bird bath for them, which kept freezing over all day long yesterday. I fretted about it and got on the internet to see what people do to keep the water from freezing. This pictured bird bath heater is one way, but it requires an extension cord from your house to the bird bath, and I'm not willing to run a cord out the door. They do make solar heated ones, but usually that doesn't make much sense in the Pacific Northwest where we just don't get a lot of sun in the winter.

Okay, what about battery powered ones? They do make them but they must not be very popular because I couldn't find much on line to consider. I'll go over to the Wild Bird Chalet today and see what they have for me. I did find a wonderful idea of putting bricks in the oven and heating them up, and placing one in the middle of the bird bath, which would work for people like me who are willing to spend their day taking care of the birds!

There are so many things to worry about, I don't know why this became so prominent in my mind last night. Maybe it was watching the birds try to drink water yesterday and their little beaks just met hard ice. I would go out and break up the ice but within an hour it was back again.

My grandmother was a champion worrier. She would find things in my life to worry about because she didn't have enough in her own life to fill that void. I remember telling her not to worry about me because I wasn't worried, but she would just look at me and say "that's why I need to; someone has to!" It is easy to find something to worry about: look at all the things that can go wrong with the human body! Look at all the distressed homeless people! (Oh my, now I've done it! What are THEY doing tonight?)

So today I'll fix the problem somehow and make sure my birdies have the best care I can provide. I wish it were so easy to do something for those people huddled under bridges.


  1. We have had our water bowl plugged in for some time. It will need cleaning soon. We also put a large stone in the center so the smallest birds can land on it and still get a drink.

  2. You don't have to worry about me DJan. I'm alive and feeling very average. And lucky me I might be leaving your first comment today. We filled our bird feeder yesterday. And we have a little water heater with a cord. So you don't have to worry about the birds in my yard!

  3. I always worry about the homeless when the weather gets bad - what a miserable life. The problem is much bigger than just volunteering to help out - not enough alcohol/drugs rehabilitation centre's to help them manage their addictions so they can get off the streets. It is heartbreaking. But at least we can make sure the wee birdie's get some food ad water. Well done you for being so caring.

  4. Are there no outside receptacles? We still don't have wiring run to the chicken house, so extension cords run from the barn. We have heated waterers for them. The goats and the horses have a heating element in their troughs, plus Maggie has a heated bucket in her stall. Oh, yeah... can't forget the heated dish in the barn for the cats that get locked inside at night! The wild birds have plenty of choices around here. They just have to wait their turn!

  5. Just remember Jan. One of my favorite quotes, "Worry is a misuse of the imagination". Most of the things we worry about never happen, anyway.

    This coming from a "champion" worrier. But...I am getting better...maybe.

    What did the birds do before you even knew they were there??

  6. Whatever happened to birds flying south for the winter?

    You're making me glad I don't live up there. I'm sure I would also be awake at night, possibly building little birdhouses with central heating.

    I love that quote, Norma Jean! I'll have to try to remember it and hopefully incorporate it into my outlook on life.

  7. All you can do is all you can do. Please let us know what solution you stumble across.
    Don't birds grow more feathers or something in the winter? Is that a silly question?

  8. You sound so much like me. I worry about the birds too. I fuss over my feeders and fill them several times a day. I have never tried a heater in my bird bath. I usually fill a fresh bowl at the same time every morning. The birds have learned the schedule and they wait for it. I also wish there was a way to protect them from the wind and cold. I guess we have to rely on nature's instincts for them to find shelter.

  9. I worry about the same things. Especially when I lived in Minnesota. I worried about all the horses people left out in the -25 degree weather. I worried about the birds until I realized there were not any birds in the winter! Seriously - no birds. I saw a Great Snowy Owl, and some high-flying geese, but that's it!

    You have a dear and kind heart - you will figure out the perfect solution. We have our feeder out but we have a fast running stream behind our house, so birds can get a drink all winter. But I haven't seen any birds for a few days - it's all white. I wonder where they go?

  10. It’s not good to worry DJan but I know what you mean because my husband does the same with our backyard birds. I was reading a good article at the doctor on Time magazine about parents who worry too much about their kids. For example it said that crime has been going down but they worry more about their kids. “Death by injury has dropped more than 50% since 1980…. but among 6-to-8-year-olds, free playtime dropped 25%” mostly because parents don’t let their kids play outside because they worry too much.

  11. Great quote Norma Jean, very true.

    Like Lily asked, outside receptacles? I was looking at some online the other day, I like to keep fresh water out summer and winter for all the little critters that visit. I have several outside electric receptacles so that's probably the one I will go with. See I worry about the little guys too. Especially when the temps get near zero.

    The homeless in our area, I was listening to the scanner and the police were finding shelters for several individuals. If they run out of beds apparently there are funds available for a few hotel rooms in the area.

  12. Speaking of worry...I am worried about my dog's condition today, he was salivating and I know there's a problem. I took him to the vet and yes she was poisoned, she was given an antidote and she's a bit okay now.

    DJ how nice of you to worry about those birds, some people don't for they don't care at all, what if they're the birds and nobody wanted to look after them during the cold season?


  13. Thank goodness there are people like you, DJan... You have a very kind heart.

  14. Just don't give up on them! They depend on you! If you forget to feed them tomorrow, they'll die of the cold. Just don't oversleep...........!
    Blessings, Star

  15. It is so sweet that you worry about your birds. I do too...when we left for Florida, I worried about them,and sure enough...since we have been back we are seeing less at our feeders! :-{
    I hope they come back soon.


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