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Old 01-29-2013, 06:18 PM   #1
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Winter Feeding of Critters

During the winter months, each evening at about 15 minutes after sunset, we spread about 1 litre of Agway's molasses laden Superior Performance Horse Feed around our mulch pile. To my surprise, the first guest diner tonight was a BIIG FAAT cottontail who piled right on while I was still spreading the feed + 1/2 litre of rum soaked wild black cherries. That bunny must have been pretty hungry to come within 4 feet of me to hog down the horse feed. Hope the critters sober up before sunrise after ingesting those rum laced black cherries. Think I'll have some rum laced raisins on my ice cream tonight and hope to be up and around to feed the birds at about sunrise tomorrow. Starting shortly before sunrise, the birds and some grey squirrels sit on the lilac bush by our back door, begging for a handout. I'm a tad deaf but it's scary to hear my wife talking to these critters when she dons her boots and goes out to feed them.

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Old 01-29-2013, 06:25 PM   #2
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Rum soaked cherries?! I have never heard of doing that before to feed wild animals. Seems like a waste
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:09 PM   #3
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Rum soaked cherries?! I have never heard of doing that before to feed wild animals. Seems like a waste
I sip the cherry infused rum (sometimes with a little Coca Cola) , they (the critters) get the 'mash' (fiber and calories). A little buzz makes watching Maude a little more tolerable. Maude's neighbor / girlfriend (Vivian) is more my speed.
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:13 PM   #4
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Whew! Thanks for 'splaining, Bill, I thought it was a waste of rum soaked cherries too!
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:29 PM   #5
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I would be concerned with the animals coming so close to humans and the possibility of rabies.
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:37 PM   #6
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I would be concerned with the animals coming so close to humans and the possibility of rabies.
In my area most all of the critters are herbivores, I wear boots and (so far) it's legal to carry a pistol.
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Old 01-29-2013, 11:53 PM   #7
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I used to have a Blue Jay that would sit on the tree close to my patio and screech at me if he saw me in the house. He was reminding me to go put a few shelled peanuts out on the railing for him.
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:07 AM   #8
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I would be concerned with the animals coming so close to humans and the possibility of rabies.
with all of that rum in them, i doubt the bunnies can catch rabies from jpb...
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:22 AM   #9
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Natural antiseptic...
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:38 AM   #10
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I used to have a Blue Jay that would sit on the tree close to my patio and screech at me if he saw me in the house. He was reminding me to go put a few shelled peanuts out on the railing for him.
When my sister lived in the country, she would feed Tippa Dog out on the porch in a tin pie plate. A family of Blue Jays lived in the tree right next to the porch. The male would come down and try to carry off the pie tin when there was food in it. Tippa Dog ate most of his food off the floor of the porch.
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Old 02-02-2013, 07:58 AM   #11
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I've been winter-supplementing wild animals with bits of food for years; it hasn't harmed them. Deer, birds, (wild turkeys lately), raccoons, squirrels...

I do watch them all closely for signs of rabies.....not a sign of any in 16 years...fingers crossed.

I figure that if I'm going to live close to wild animals, with nature all around, I would like the animals to be healthy, so I do my part to help nurture that, with healthy food. I buy deer feed (molasses-laced oats, alfalfa, etc and black sunflower seeds from a local grain supplier). It's a rather expensive hobby, but I figure we are also helping feed the Dodd brothers and their families, who own the business. They told us that most of their business now is due to bird-feeders rather than farmers, who are a dying breed around here.



In the late fall, I've seen birds feasting on wild cherries which have grown a bit "mulled" and the birds actually seem tipsy from the fermented berries, squawking loudly, flying wildly and erratically.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:14 AM   #12
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Was a little frustrating this morning to watch the gray squirrels burying most all the roasted in the shell peanuts that I put out. At least they left the bird seed for the birds.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:28 AM   #13
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I was surprised to see a covey of quail eating under my bird feeders last winter.

Glad, too--quail are not as common as they used to be, due to changing farming practices. Guess my overgrown fence rows are good for something!
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:48 AM   #14
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justplainbill: you can stop being frustrated if you watch closely and notice that the jays are very good at re-finding what the squirrels have buried. It's a perpetual game of hide-and-seek.
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:29 AM   #15
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I was surprised to see a covey of quail eating under my bird feeders last winter.

Glad, too--quail are not as common as they used to be, due to changing farming practices. Guess my overgrown fence rows are good for something!
Up until 25 -30 years ago we had quite a few bob whites in my area. That was when the winter human population was about 1,200. The human population has grown to over 4,000 and the quail are gone.
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Old 02-06-2013, 07:27 AM   #16
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justplainbill: you can stop being frustrated if you watch closely and notice that the jays are very good at re-finding what the squirrels have buried. It's a perpetual game of hide-and-seek.
This morning the blue jays are pretty much beating the squirrels to the peanuts.
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Old 02-06-2013, 07:39 AM   #17
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I heard a mockingbird song this morning. For some reason, I don't hear them often around here.

Maybe it's the kooky weather. Winter seems to be a split between warm and cold.

Summers are HOT, but every so often there will be an unexpected cool, almost fall-like day to throw you off, right in the middle of a heat wave.
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Old 02-06-2013, 07:51 AM   #18
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I heard a mockingbird song this morning. For some reason, I don't hear them often around here.

Maybe it's the kooky weather. Winter seems to be a split between warm and cold.

Summers are HOT, but every so often there will be an unexpected cool, almost fall-like day to throw you off, right in the middle of a heat wave.
Didn't know it ever got COLD in NO.
It's 28 by me and forecasted to go down to 18F tonight.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:11 AM   #19
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Didn't know it ever got COLD in NO.
It's 28 by me and forecast to go down to 18F tonight.

Well, I admit, my cold isn't like your cold. I've lived in Connecticut, so I remember your kind of cold.

Now, cold to me is having to wear sweatpants instead of shorts, and socks with my flip-flops.
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