Tree Bark

Birds are fun to watch, but some can damage trees in their quest for food.

I love feeding the birds in the winter.

We set out several different types of feeders in the backyard and get a variety of birds: blue jays, black-capped chickadees, nuthatches, four different kinds of woodpeckers.

It’s a pleasure watching their dance. The woodpeckers go for suet and the blue jays prefer peanuts, when we can keep that feeder filled. The other birds compete for the smaller seeds and other food: sunflower seeds, millet, cracked corn. And the squirrels compete for all these foods.

So that overall dance is complicated. Some species aren’t competing with each other while others vie for the same food resources. Competition is tough enough, much less avoiding becoming prey for some other critter.

Read the full story in your Monday, January 18th Times-Record online edition. Purchase your online copy by clicking subscribe in the top left corner of the www.times-online.com home page.

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