Hummingbirds at feeders
FLIGHTS OF FANCY— APRIL 2016
Spring has sprung, at least in my corner of the world, and one of my favorite activities is about to commence! The return of hummingbirds has always been one of my favorite times of year. These colorful flying jewels zip and dart in an amazing display of aerial acrobatics. I love watching them sip nectar from the flowers and feeders on my porch. Unfortunately, due to the busyness of life, I am no longer able to have a traditional garden and so, had to come up with another plan to feed my feathered friends.
The good news is that I discovered container gardening, an easy-peasy way to provide abundant flowers for my flying friends. I use hanging baskets, pots and even an old shoe to hold colorful, nectar rich blooms!
I use a mixture of petunias, mints, bee balm, impatiens and coral bells. An old pot holds morning glories climbing up a trellis and a couple of butterfly bushes are planted in the yard.
I also put up two hummingbird feeders, because hummers are very territorial and will chase each other away if there is only one feeder available. It’s so fun to watch the little things buzz around my porch. Feeders are easily available in stores, just make sure to get one that is easily cleaned because it will need to be well rinsed with clear, hot water every few days.
There are many varieties of pre-made hummingbird food available however, it is so much fun to make your own. Simply take 1 part white sugar to 4 parts warm water, mix well so all the sugar dissolves….no need to boil. No need to add red food coloring as the commercial varieties do. The birds don’t care and really, how healthy is food dye for them anyway? Just be sure to keep the feeder cleaned and filled, as hummers will come to depend on you as a food source.
This can be such a fun activity for your children! From planting flowers in the soil to making hummer food to watching it all come together in their own hummingbird garden…..what fun! Think about it! These hummers have flown literally thousands of miles just to share some face time in your very own back yard!
For more interesting hummer information, check out this website…..it even includes a migration map so you can track the bird’s migration progress! http://www.hummingbirds.net/index.html
And take a look at the video of hummingbird activity at my home along with a photo of a particularly friendly little guy.
Thank you for joining me! See you next month!
Lolita and Ilene
are up for adoption!
Guinea Pig Rescue
to find out more!
Welcome to Critter Corner! As an Animal Communicator, I have come to appreciate the diversity of life to be found in this wonderful world we live in. The message of this column is to appreciate the natural wonders that surround us; to understand that animals are sentient beings with rich emotional lives including love, sadness and joy. As a Mindful Mom and Granny, I believe it is essential that our children be taught to respect and value Mother Nature in all her glory. As a Reiki Master and Certified Crystal Healer, I know that living a compassionate life is critical to the well-being of all the life on earth whether it be plant, animal or human.
One of my favorite quotes is by Albert Schweitzer, who said, “ Until we extend our circle of compassion to all living things, humanity will not find peace.”
To that end, this fun, interactive column will be bringing you information about compassionate care of creatures great and small along with helpful hints to living successfully with the pets in your lives. There will be engaging activities to do with your kids that involve your pets or the natural world.
This month we will be celebrating March’s National Rescue A Guinea Pig Month. Guinea Pigs are wonderful little pets and it is amazing to me just how many are given up for adoption. We were privileged to have two little piglets, Crystal and Diamond, join our family when our son was small. Their animated squeaks filled the house as they greeted our son when he came home from school. Piggies can be wonderful snugglers and are very loving.
Adopt a Rescue Guinea Pig Month is the perfect time to talk with your kids about guinea pigs and the ways they might help the cause. Maybe they could visit a pet store and purchase a piggie treat for donation or find a guinea pig rescue site and, with your help, share a photo of an adoptable piglet with the explanation that by sharing the picture to a wider audience, they would be helping the animal find a forever home.
Here is a good site to promote some great conversations with your children: http://www.onlineguineapigcare.com/50-fun-facts-about-guinea-pigs-for-kids/
Thanks for joining my CCO (Chief Canine Officer) JR and I in a new, exciting adventure! We’ll see you next month!
- Jeanna Billings
Jeanna Billings is an Animal Communicator serving an international clientele, a Reiki Master and a Certified Crystal Healer. She volunteered for many years with humane societies and animal rescues, serving as a Board Director, Adoption Counselor and Humane Educator. She currently teaches animal communication classes and provides private consultations. She lives in Indiana with her husband, three dachshunds, two cats and a very chatty parakeet. You can find her online at www.ShamansSpirit.net .