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Is Spring coming or what ......


By daff


I am so looking forward to spring, When can we expect the first day??? This damp weather is making my arthritis play up, although it hurts when it’s warm too, (stop complaining Gail)

I am very happy to see Sparrows in the garden, there is about half dozen of them, I’m going to buy some nest boxes for them as soon as i see something suitable, anyone any ideas, nothing too expensive. From what i can gather, you have to buy 2 or 3 at once and put them together?? There are far more varieties of blue-tits in the garden this year than there was last year, but they don’t seem to want to know about the nest boxes that we put up for them, are we doing anything wrong?? And we seem to be inundated with Doves and wood pigeons which if i’m not there to shoo them off, eat everything in sight, (here i go again)

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Hi Gail love your Little Flower Holder Ball LOL :) My Dairy says Spring Begins March 20th & Summer Follows On June 21st , Then Autunm September 22nd & Once again Winter is here on December 21st! Hope this is some Help :) x

15 Jan, 2009


Hi Gail, Like you I would like spring sooner rather than later. Trouble is it creep in slowly, a little bulb here, a touch more greenery there and suddenly its SPRING! With a bit of luck Jacques' diary is wrong and it will come before March 20th!! :)

15 Jan, 2009


They say Spring comes Earlier every year Gee due 2 the Global Warming so i dont dout itl be here b4 March :)

15 Jan, 2009


Hello Gail ~
The sparrows which feed in my garden love to nest in large Pyracantha bushes alongside my neighbour's house. With nest-boxes, it is best to site them where they don't get too hot from direct sunshine.

There are a number of other factors to bear in mind when choosing the best boxes and places to put them. I'm sure other members will give you lots of these.

It is exciting seeing signs of Springtime appearing. The bulbs are already sprouting everywhere !

Good luck with your garden bird projects. :o)

Do the Wood Pigeons and Collared Doves nest near to your garden, or just visit to feed ?

15 Jan, 2009


I call my visiting woodpigeons the 'Jumbo-jets' as they land like one! I had to get helpful husband to re-design the bird table, with a netting front and a roof - the little birds got used to it immediately, the woodpigeons can't get the food any longer. I was really fed up with them gobbling it all!

They pay me back, though - they have completely squashed the pansy plants in the border under the bird table. :-(

TT - we have had a woodpigeon nesting in our vine for the last two or three years. Henry goes and stands underneath and barks at her - she takes no notice at all. Quite funny, really! The nest is just a platform of twigs - not woven at all.

15 Jan, 2009


Thanks Jacque, I now have something to look forward to, like Gee I would like Spring to come a bit earlier, not too much as i think the seasons should come when they should. Thank you TT, I have 2 Pyracanthas in the garden plus a couple of Holly trees. The pigeons are fed by my neighbour, I won't feed them and wave my arms when ever they attempt to come into the garden.
I'm sorry to say Spritz that i am becoming to dislike the pigeons and treat them like the pests that they are.
In the olden days, the posh people use to eat woodpigeons, and i'm sure that i've seen them in a butchers somewhere, If the credit crunch gets worse, It maybe an idea to start doing pigeon pies, that's if your not a vegitarian. : )

15 Jan, 2009


I agree with you about pigeons, Daff - almost as bad as squirrels. Huge Ferny-Fittingroom made a pigeon pie at the original River Cottage - a North African recipe with icing sugar among other things. Don't remember any squirrel recipes though. Shame.

15 Jan, 2009


I am a vegetarian, so I'll leave the pigeon pies to others.:o)

What a fantastic photo that would be ~ of Henry under the vine, barking at the woodpigeon nest. :o)

I now recall last year ~ that 'helpful-husband' bird table design being described by Spritz. Sounds a great idea. :o)

15 Jan, 2009


Hi Daff, we will begin to notice the days staying lighter for longer soon and that's always a good sign Spring is on its way. Lucky you, getting lots of sparrows, I hardly see any in my garden these days. We get big wood pigeons on our bird table too - my husband needs to build me a roof! They sit there for ages eating away. Hope the others can give you some advice on the bird boxes, and hope you are not feeling too uncomfortable with the arthritis.

15 Jan, 2009


Luckily wagger, I have only 1 squirrel that comes into the garden, I let him/her take a few nuts then chase him away, he's been coming for the past 3 years, so he doesn't seem to be bothered that i give him the chase.

Thanks Dawn I'm more lucky than some people that have arthritis, I know someone who is just in their late 20s and has it in her knees, I'm 54 (only just) : ) and mine is in my fingers. I have noticed it becoming lighter at night, It's just after 4.30pm here in Kent before it get ark.
Gail x

15 Jan, 2009


My cousin has suffered since his 20's, sad isnt it, glad yours isn't too bad. Let's get January out of the way, then Feb is a short month and then it will nearly be Spring, ever hopeful me!

15 Jan, 2009


Hi Daff , sparrow boxes are available in rows of three or four attached as quite sociable and will nest side by side.

Although pigeons and doves look greedy they feed mainly on corn which often used to bulk cheaper bird seed. If mix with more expensive finer seeds everyone gets a look in.

Yes Wagger if you really dislike squirrels that much it is possible to find restaurants with them on the menu.

15 Jan, 2009


Gail your poor fingers arthritus is an awful thing as there dosn,t seem to be very much they can do for you , spring will be along soon , I saw the weather report and it said there was going to be a lot of rain so maybe thats why you are hurting more , my hubby swears he can tell when it,s going to rain because his knees hurts x

15 Jan, 2009


A few years ago my fingers were really bad and I was offered plastic knuckle joints on the middle fingers of both hands~my fingers look like sausages but they are not so bad these days~ A few years ago when we were in Capetown, the night before Caz' wedding I could not sleep for the pain in my hands~it gets cold and quite windy at night sometimes there.
I always wear a hematite bracelet now but don't know if it is that which is helping~my doc says sometimes as a result of something you are doing or eating you can have a period of remission.
I have been told that the top discs in my neck have collapsed and that I can have an op to fuse them together to prevent nerves being trapped~my right hand sometimes goes numb particularly if I am carrying anything but as long as I can get way with not having any medical intervention I will!
There is always Glucosamine.garlic,ginger etc~ have you given any of that a go?

15 Jan, 2009


I keep telling myself that spring is on the way Gail. It would be easier to believe if the snow would go away.

Pigeons do go for the corn and the wheat that is in bird feed. Try and find a mix that has little or none of these. You could also try spreading seed on the ground away from the feeders as the pigeons prefer ground feeding.

With the bird houses it is important that the hole be the right size for the bird you are trying to attract. Too big or too small and the bird won't use it. They also like to be a certain distance from the ground depending on the bird. Is there some info that you can get from the RSPB or somewhere that will tell you a bit more about their preferences?

Sorry about your arthritis. I have degenerative disc disease in my lumbar spine which makes gardening a little painful. However, the joy of gardening makes up for it. :o)

16 Jan, 2009


hi gail, sorry to hear about your arthritis , let's hope we get a nice warm summer , to soothe away the winter aches.
i have slight reynolds disease , so my fingers and toes get a little cold in winter, i am a keen golfer , so i use warming packs inside overmittens to keep my fingers warm enough to play on the cold days.the last 4 weeks have been so cold i didn't bother playing, but we did dress up warm and go for some long walks in the crisp sunny days.
we have 2 bird boxes that get a look in by the blue tits but they don't nest for some reason, maybe i will move them to a new spot . weather for this weekend looks awful , so that's another job on hold............the list is getting longer.

16 Jan, 2009


Years ago we had one of Spritz's "jumbo jets" landing on our home-made bird table and he knocked it right over! Then a few years ago, while we still lived in Essex, we were watching a film on Sky TV when the picture disappeared. This sometimes happened if bad weather disrupted the signal, but that day had been lovely and quite calm, so we looked outside at the dish and there was a Collared Dove with a twig in its beak attempting to build a nest on the reciever! NOT my favourite birds! Having worked in London for many years and being used to hearing pigeons called "flying rats" I don't fancy eating them either! Here on our mountain the few that are around fly very quickly from one tree to another before they become lunch for one of the buzzards or eagles.

16 Jan, 2009


Thank you all for your info about the sparrow boxes, I certainly want to encourage more into the garden if possible.

You keep thinking positive Dawn, Spring is just around the corner. : )

I have seen the 3 in a row nest boxes Bonkersbon, I think they want over £30 + for them, I know when you get 3 in a row it isn't a lot of money, but will keep looking.

Amy your husband will have to be our weather man and let us know when it's going to rain : )

Arlene, I have never heard of plastic knuckle joints, I will have to look into this as i use my hands and fingers in my work, It may help, thanks, I do have a magnetic bracelet that someone told me to buy, whether it's mind over matter, my migraines have stopped, well... I haven't had one in over 2 weeks. I'll not complain again Arlene, compared to you there is nothing wrong with me. (I'll try not to complain) : )

Will look for a different bird mix Gilli, that may work, as with Arlene, compared with you both, I am a healthy person, as you said (the joy of gardening makes up for it) it really does Gilli, I love the garden, I find it very relaxing.

Steve ... I am not going to mention my arthritis ever again, well .... not yet anyway : ) but i'm going to try some of those plastic knuckle joints that Arlene mentioned, to use when i'm at work. Golf is very good exercise, I like walking and try to get out every other Sunday when i'm not at work. That maybe a good idea moving the bird boxed, will speak to my husband.

Nariz, where you live sounds wonderful, on a mountain, with buzzards or eagles, my husband (and me), would love to come and take pictures of the scenery and wildlife, I could bring you some more pigeons for the buzzards and eagles if you like : )

Gail xxx

16 Jan, 2009


I think I'd rather feed them to the kites than myself, Bonkers so I'll give that a miss. There was a programme or two on TV about roadkills - all sorts of animals being eaten - don't think I could unless this recession gets a whole lot worse.

16 Jan, 2009


unfortunately they require an op to replace your own knuckle joints with plastic ones~they do apparently work and give your fingers a more normal look but then will require at least a period where you can't use your hands which is one of the reasons I haven't had it done.
I also believe you can get a rosehip extract and a green mussel one which can help?
Good luck with whatever you try!

16 Jan, 2009


Thanks Arlene, I thought it was something that you could buy. I have just a few more years of work yet, so i'll also give the op a miss for the time being.

16 Jan, 2009

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