Fool Me Twice

by Em
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Last week was chilly and very wet, and once the sleet and snow and wind picked up I decided to put out some food for the robins who looked particularly miserable.

I had more past-prime blueberries to set on the platform feeders, but my big mistake was buckling on my “no peanuts” pledge until the grackles and other blackbirds moved on.

Robins eat peanuts (well at least mine do!) so I tossed some of those onto the platform feeders as well.

It was like a horror movie. Within minutes, a flock of cowbirds, grackles, starlings and Red-winged Blackbirds descended from the sky and started chowing like it was their final meal on earth.

The photo below shows about one-sixth of the flock. The rest scattered when they saw me in the window trying to snap their photo. They move so fast and are just all over the place at once vacuuming up all the food they can in the most frantic way possible. And they snap at each other and bully each other, and all the other bird species want no part of that and flee.

I stood in the window for awhile trying to shoo them away, but the effect barely lasted 10 seconds and then more birds would return.

Within an hour every peanut (and most of the birdseed) was gone. The robin tried to hold his ground for a bit but there was just too much rude and noisy competition.

This time I really mean it. No more peanuts until the coast is clear!

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