space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* From Our Readers
space
space
Sports Shorts
* Area Teams Prepare for Friday Night Openers
* Anderson Takes Over as Marinette Football Coach
* Bayerl Looks at Rebuilding Season for Young Bulldogs
* Bear Management Zones Stay Unchanged for the 2019 season
* Redbirds Wins Playoff Matchup Over Pulaski

space
Peshtigo Fire
space
e-Edition
Now Available
For more information
click here
dot
THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
space
dot
space

From My Window

Issue Date: February 14, 2019

Conflict on the Patio

By Jane Thibodeau Martin,

When I was younger I was perplexed at what seemed like an obsession some older people had with feeding birds. The whole thing seemed boring to me, until I began to understand how much interesting behavior you can see at feeders. So after my marriage we got a bird feeder and joined the neighborhood discussions about which birds we'd been able to attract. And, of course, how irritated we were with the squirrels who not only pilfered the "bird" food but usually did their best to destroy the feeders in the process.

I didn't do much bird feeding in Oklahoma. There weren't many small birds around my house due to lack of cover, unless we had snow. If we got snow, my yard would be alive with cardinals " a delight but a very rare event. Most of the time, my feeder swung in the endless wind, spilling seed and drawing rats, lots of rats. Feeding rats is not especially rewarding, and in Oklahoma a healthy colony of rats also attracted rodent-feeding snakes. I appreciate the snakes, but preferred they reside somewhere besides my front flower garden. So much for the bird feeding there.

Once we got settled into our house in Wisconsin in October I put up a brand-new, squirrel resistant feeder in front of our living room window. The feeder is a design that has frustrated the diabolical squirrels at my Mother's house for several years, and the only animal that has breached its steel case so far is a bear. I am confident the squirrels are going to find our feeder a challenge but I am too smart to say it is squirrel proof. Don't bet too much money against those smart little acrobats.

But several months went by, and not a single bird arrived. It would seem our location is good, with the woods and plenty of cover a few yards away. But the hex was broken when I put up a suet log. The woodpeckers began hanging around, and soon I spotted the very first chickadee. Now we are enjoying a large mixed flock of visitors daily, mostly small finches, but a few nuthatches, various woodpecker species and my favorite, the cheerfully chirping tiny chickadees.

There is a definite pecking order (there's a pun there!) at the feeder. The finches, always in large gangs, rout the chickadees away when they arrive. The most dominate finches monopolize the perch on the feeder, with the rest feeding on seed I scatter under the feeder. So far no cardinals, although I'd welcome them " and I know sooner or later the blue jays I hear announcing my presence in the woods will catch on. Blue jays are beautiful and smart, but they are the terrorists of the bird feeder world. Once they take over, the rest of the birds must wait long and patiently for a turn. But for now, the good times roll for the little guys.

My house cats have a good life indoors, but they get bored. The spectacle of all those little birds hopping around just outside the patio doors is both fascinating and maddening for them. I can see them thinking "look at that delicious little tidbit." They lurk under the coffee table like panthers in the bushes, and rush the door when they can't contain themselves any longer, scattering all the birds. I love watching their natural prey drive and stalking behavior " exactly like the big cats shown on nature shows. And no birds are harmed in the process. Even our 17 year old cat, in "hospice care" in the office, hops up on the desk to study the birds on today's menu from time to time.

The dogs also keep an eye on the presence of the little prey species on the patio, but they are too cool to lose control over birds. On the other hand, when they see a squirrel in the woods, they lose their minds. The movement of a squirrel screams "chase me" to the dogs, and I know once the squirrels start trying to break into the feeder we will endure long bouts of frustrated barking.

It's hard to believe these little bundles of feathers would find enough in the barren winter woods to survive winter without my help, although I know some of them would. Looking at tonight's forecasted wind chills, I scatter a little extra seed and ensure there is a lot of suet for the woodpeckers. My help will probably ensure a higher survival rate for the small birds, in turn providing more prey for the hawks and owls both through the winter and into the spring. Some of the spilled seed from the patio is being utilized by the little black voles that are everywhere here " another source of food for raptors, plus the foxes I hope are around and the coyotes that I know are. Even Ivy and Wolfgang on leashes have managed to kill a few voles, they are so plentiful in tunnels under the snow. I can't smell or hear them, but the dogs can.

So just my single bird feeder (and heated dish of water) are impacting numerous species of birds and mammals in our woodlot. I hope my efforts are positive, but it is a good lesson in how immense, far-ranging and almost invisible the impact of human activity is on our ecosystems world-wide. It is a demonstration, on the micro-scale of my patio, that almost all of our activities have complex consequences.

Feeding birds boring? Not for me. I can see a tiny bit of the web of Wisconsin wildlife through the window while sitting on my couch. Way better than anything on TV, and a lot more illuminating.

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone. It's an occasion to appreciate all the various forms of love in your life.

Song stuck in my head: "Teach Your Children" Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Old, but has aged very well.

You can reach me for commentary, alternative viewpoints or ideas at this e-mail address: JanieTMartin@gmail.com


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
08-22-2019


08-22-2019Front Page
Martin J. Pesmark Family Receives Purple Heart

08-22-2019Front Page
Village of Wausaukee Poised For Some Major Developments

08-22-2019Front Page
Marinette County Fair Starts Thursday, Aug. 22

08-22-2019Front Page
Fair Coronation To Take Place Aug. 22

08-22-2019Front Page
Peshtigo Is Formally Seeking Parks And Recreation Director

08-22-2019Community - Wausaukee
Town Wagner Considers New Gravel Quarry

08-22-2019Community - Wausaukee
Town Of Wausaukee Deeds Evergreen Park To Village

08-22-2019Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Blood Drive is Sept. 9th

08-22-2019Community - Wausaukee
Lego Makerspace at Niagara Library

08-22-2019Community - Crivitz
Town of Stephenson Accepts Solway Resignation

08-22-2019Community - Crivitz
Middle Inlet Board Ok's Scott's Bid

08-22-2019Community - Crivitz
Ducane, Smerchek Win in National Ski Contest

08-22-2019Community - Crivitz
To Hold Crivitz School Annual Meeting Aug. 28

08-22-2019Community - Coleman
Coleman School Spotlights Costa Rica Trip On Aug. 26

08-22-2019Community - Coleman
CCBA Sell-A-Bration in Coleman Sept. 21

08-22-2019Sports
Area Teams Prepare for Friday Night Openers

08-22-2019Sports
Anderson Takes Over as Marinette Football Coach

08-22-2019Sports
Bayerl Looks at Rebuilding Season for Young Bulldogs

08-22-2019Sports
Bear Management Zones Stay Unchanged for the 2019 season

08-22-2019Perspectives
From Our Readers

08-22-2019Perspectives
Country Cousin

08-22-2019Perspectives
From My Window

08-22-2019Obituaries
Brother George R. Armstrong

08-22-2019Obituaries
Marsha J. Corsten

08-22-2019Obituaries
Debra J. Deldin

08-22-2019Obituaries
Thomas A. Dufek

08-22-2019Obituaries
Francis L. Green

08-22-2019Obituaries
Brian W. Harris

08-22-2019Obituaries
Lorraine M. Hayes

08-22-2019Obituaries
Terry P. Howerton

08-22-2019Obituaries
Marjorie E. Jarisch

08-22-2019Obituaries
Gene D. Kaempf

08-22-2019Obituaries
James H. Krueger

08-22-2019Obituaries
Isabelle E. Luebeck

08-22-2019Obituaries
Karen L. Salzwedel

08-22-2019Obituaries
Donna M. Semrau

08-22-2019Obituaries
Arthur W. Smeester

08-22-2019Obituaries
Gerald L. Stary

08-22-2019Obituaries
Fred F. Strojny Sr.

08-22-2019Obituaries
Casimer M. Wozniak

08-15-2019Front Page
BPM, Inc. Advances Plans For Water Resource Recovery Facility

08-15-2019Front Page
Pelkin's Piggly Wiggly Is Robbed Saturday

08-15-2019Front Page
Michigan Judge Hears Evidence On Back 40 Mine Permit Appeals

08-15-2019Front Page
Town Seeks Legislator Help On Camp Five Culvert Issues

08-15-2019Front Page
Couple is Lena Dairy Fest Parade Grand Marshals

08-15-2019Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Blood Drive Set For Sept. 9

08-15-2019Community - Wausaukee
Family Packet Pick-Up is Aug. 22-23

08-15-2019Community - Wausaukee
Silver Cliff Fire & Rescue Picnic was Great Success

08-15-2019Community - Crivitz
Town Committees Meet, Supervisor Solway Resigns

08-15-2019Community - Crivitz
Suicide Awareness Training Aug. 17, 20

08-15-2019Community - Crivitz
Historical Society to Visit Land of Oz Museum

08-15-2019Community - Crivitz
Fall Conference at Crivitz Sept. 21st

08-15-2019Community - Coleman
Coleman/Pound Lioness Club Receives $1000 Grant

08-15-2019Community - Coleman
9th Dogleg Open Golf Outing for MS

08-15-2019Community - Coleman
Oconto Historical 10th Cemetery Walk Sept. 17-19

08-15-2019Community - Coleman
Chute Pond Snomo Club Raises Funds for Trail Repair

08-15-2019Sports
Redbirds Wins Playoff Matchup Over Pulaski

08-15-2019Sports
Bonus Fall Turkey Harvest Tags On-Sale Saturday, August 17th

08-15-2019Sports
WIAA Board Approves 2020 8-Player Football Alignment

08-15-2019Sports
Lindsley Shades Kravlovetz in Norway Speedway Feature Race

08-15-2019Perspectives
From Our Readers

08-15-2019Perspectives
From My Window

08-15-2019Perspectives
Country Cousin

08-15-2019Obituaries
Patricia Aderman

08-15-2019Obituaries
Charles T. Aucutt

08-15-2019Obituaries
Gloria A. Blankschien

08-15-2019Obituaries
Mary A. Brasure

08-15-2019Obituaries
Patrick E. Caebe

08-15-2019Obituaries
Carol L. Engles-Welzien

08-15-2019Obituaries
Pearl Erdman

08-15-2019Obituaries
Gary G. Hasenfus

08-15-2019Obituaries
Michele Heller

08-15-2019Obituaries
Linda M. Hemminger

08-15-2019Obituaries
Connor R. Kellogg

08-15-2019Obituaries
John W. Klescewski

08-15-2019Obituaries
James J. Lasley

08-15-2019Obituaries
Carol A. Montour

08-15-2019Obituaries
Max F. Osmanski

08-15-2019Obituaries
Henry C. Porras III

08-15-2019Obituaries
Richard A. Race

08-15-2019Obituaries
Tyler J. Seid

08-15-2019Obituaries
Beverly S. Smith 

08-15-2019Obituaries
Dennis L. Strojny

08-15-2019Obituaries
Daniel Votava

08-08-2019


08-08-2019Front Page
Peshtigo Okays Dismissal Of Parks And Rec Director

08-08-2019Front Page
Strong Thunder Storm Rips Through Peshtigo

08-08-2019Front Page
Speakers Scold Mayor For Personnel Handling

08-08-2019Front Page
Peshtigo Sets 5-Year Plan For Street Improvements

08-08-2019Front Page
Ryan Philipps Charged With Attempted Murder

08-08-2019Community - Wausaukee
SC Auxiliary Finalizes Aug. 10 Picnic Plans

08-08-2019Community - Wausaukee
Packerland Broadband Ruran Internet Now Astrea

08-08-2019Community - Wausaukee
Under Ice Beaver Trapping Demo Aug. 8

08-08-2019Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Blood Drive Sept. 9th

08-08-2019Community - Crivitz
Northwoods Apostolic Fall Town Hall Tour

08-08-2019Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Youth Football Registration Aug. 12

08-08-2019Community - Crivitz
U.S. News Ranks 5th Hospital in State

08-08-2019Community - Crivitz
Friends of Crivitz Airport Get Together

08-08-2019Community - Coleman
CCBA Sell-A-Bration in Coleman Sept. 21

08-08-2019Community - Coleman
Snapshot Day for Aquatic Invasive Species

08-08-2019Community - Coleman
Six Performances of "Sister Act" at Oconto Falls

08-08-2019Community - Coleman
List Winners of Coleman Fire Department Picnic

08-08-2019Perspectives
From Our Readers

08-08-2019Perspectives
From My Window

08-08-2019Perspectives
Country Cousin

08-08-2019Sports
Marinette Shutsdown Shawano With Tenth Inning Double Play

08-08-2019Sports
Peshtigo Middle School Lists Fall Sports Practices

08-08-2019Sports
M&M Stingrays Compete at State Swim Meet

08-08-2019Sports
Football Practice Launches Fall Sport Seasons Preparations

08-08-2019Obituaries
Lucille L. Coppens

08-08-2019Obituaries
Lois Dudkiewicz

08-08-2019Obituaries
Doris Evrard

08-08-2019Obituaries
Fred C. Fleischfresser

08-08-2019Obituaries
James B. Fredrickson

08-08-2019Obituaries
Warren A. Grenier

08-08-2019Obituaries
Laura E. Huffman

08-08-2019Obituaries
Marlene A. Jagiello

08-08-2019Obituaries
Margaret Neilio

08-08-2019Obituaries
Ruth A. Paulsen  

08-08-2019Obituaries
Nicholas J. Racsek

08-08-2019Obituaries
Jerome A. Rouse

08-08-2019Obituaries
Zachary D. Rusch

08-08-2019Obituaries
Arthur Schmittinger

08-08-2019Obituaries
Donald M. Tenarvitz

08-08-2019Obituaries
Elizabeth J. Tickler

08-08-2019Obituaries
Wayne W. Wosnick

07-31-2019Front Page


07-31-2019Front Page
County Agrees to Keep ATV/UTV Routes Open

07-31-2019Front Page
County Board Takes No Action On Twin Bridge Beach

07-31-2019Front Page
Plea Agreement In Pembine Homicide

07-31-2019Front Page
Jane Kopish Sequin Candidate for Judge

07-31-2019Sports
Legion State Tourney Ends Early For Marinette Post 39

07-31-2019Sports
Lena's 1st Dirt City Duel Has Successful Weekend

07-31-2019Sports
MCC/STAA 15th Annual Softball Game Aug. 3

07-31-2019Sports
Lindsley Strikes Again, Wrangles Norway Speedway Late Model Win

07-31-2019Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Fall Festival Planning Meeting Aug. 1

07-31-2019Community - Wausaukee
WHS Activity Code Aug. 5th

07-31-2019Community - Wausaukee
Matriarchs To Lunch at Luigi's

07-31-2019Community - Crivitz
Many Citizens Help Search for Missing Prop

07-31-2019Community - Crivitz
Missionaries to Speak at Crivitz Bible Fellowship

07-31-2019Community - Crivitz
Faith Sponsors Driving Course

07-31-2019Community - Crivitz
CAWC Make More Donations

07-31-2019Community - Coleman
CCBA Sell-A-Bration in Coleman Sept. 21

07-31-2019Community - Coleman
Coleman Flag Football Sign-ups on Aug. 7th

07-31-2019Community - Coleman
Coleman Has Mexican Store

07-31-2019Community - Coleman
Ongoing Research of Purple Martins at Oconto

07-31-2019Perspectives
From My Window

07-31-2019Perspectives
Country Cousin

07-31-2019Obituaries
Susan L. Atwood


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Do you think the Green Bay Packers will have a successful season with their new head coach?
space Yes
No
Undecided
space
TO VOTE CLICK
YES, NO or UNDECIDED

Suggest a Question
space .
space
FRONT
space
.
space
CLASSIFIEDS
space
.
space
COMMUNITY
space
.
space
GUEST BOOK
space
.
space
NEWS
space
.
space
OBITS
space
.
space
PERSPECTIVES
space
.
space
SPORTS
space
.
space
SUBSCRIBE
space
.
space
.
space
PESHTIGO FIRE
space
.
space
CUSTOM PRINTING
space
.
space
TIMES' SAVER
space
.
space
Click for Peshtigo, Wisconsin Forecast
FORECAST
space
Quick...
News or Ad Search
Enter News key words.
Enter Ad key words.



Peshtigo Times
841 Maple St
PO Box 187
Peshtigo, WI 54157
Phone: 715-582-4541
Email:
News@
PeshtigoTimes.com

space
Fax: 715-582-4662
© 2000-2019
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites