Monday, April 10, 2017

What I Absolutely Hate About Spring

Spring in the mountains is a wonderful time of year.
 
The snow is melting, the creeks are gurgling happily through the forest, the birdsong is spectacular.
 
 
But there's something about spring in the mountains that I absolutely hate.
 
The darned bears wake up from hibernation.
 
I had a wonderful day in the garden yesterday, cutting back garden beds and raking them out, getting ready for the season.
 
 
My younger daughter was home with me and helped me all day, lugging the raked up debris off into the edge of the woods, by the blackberry brambles.
 
 
We planted the first pansies of the season, which thrills me to no end. They are like little pots of sunshine, warming my heart and soul after a long winter.
 
It was a glorious day, in the 60's with sunshine, blue skies, and the sound of birdsong and wind chimes combining to make the most beautiful music.
 
We couldn't have been more content.
 
And then, last night, in the wee hours, we had a visitor.
 
 
That darned bear woke up hungry and grouchy and took it out on my deck gate.
 
 
He got a hold of one of my expensive bird feeders by bending the pole - just look at that middle pole compared to the other two.
 
He had the feeder on the ground, eating all the seed, when something scared him off.
 
My daughter finally managed to wake me out of my melatonin-induced sleep, and I ran out in my bathrobe with the spotlight to rescue the feeders and lock them in the metal bin in the garage.
 
 
However, it was too late for the gate. He must have been mad that he couldn't open the gate, since we latch it to keep the dogs in, and just ripped the lattice right off to climb through the hole.
 
 
See that tall staircase to the right of the birdbath? That's the one the punk of a bear climbed up to get to the feeders.
 
Obviously it's my own fault, I should have put the feeders in the garage at night once the weather started to warm up.
 
But, still! I hate those darned bears! They are such a nuisance!
 
 
This morning I hung up only the flat feeder, as he can't do too much damage to that one. And you better believe I'll be putting it in by dusk every night until the dead of winter now.
 
But if he starts making a nuisance of himself during the daylight hours, even this feeder will have to go. Last summer I had to stop feeding the birds completely for months, until he took my house off his feeding route. I really, really missed feeding the birds, I enjoy watching them so much! But safety must come first, for both the humans and furbabies in my home.
 
 
Let's hope he doesn't start coming after the hummingbird feeder - I just put it out yesterday, hoping to catch those early hummers that come back after the winter.
 
They'll be here soon, I can't wait!
 
Do you feed the birds? Do you have problems with bears or other wildlife?

51 comments:

  1. I wouldn't like bears around one bit! We feed the birds...the biggest problem is squirrels and occasionally hawks.

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    1. There were two hawks circling overhead yesterday when I was out in the garden, Linda - I was worried about my little birds!

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  2. He sure was a naughty bear! Hopefully he moves on the other side of the mountain!

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    1. Even if he does there will be another right behind him, Bernideen - that's the reality of living in the mountains!

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  3. I can't feed birds here. Too many restaurants around me that bring rats to the dumpsters in the alley next to my fence. I do have a solar bird bath they enjoy.
    Brenda

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    1. That's a shame, Brenda, I know you'd love it - but I am glad you have the solar bird bath to draw them in.

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  4. I know that feeling, haven't seen the bears here yet. Our feeder is on a pole 10 feet off the ground, and they still try to climb the pole to get to it.

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    1. Do they succeed often, Carole? I've thought about running a wire high up off the ground but that would sure make it hard to fill the feeders!

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  5. We used to have a weekend house in the Catskills and could never ever have bird feeders. :(

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    1. I've struggled with the bears for years, but we somehow manage to live together in harmony....MOST of the time!

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  6. Wow thats scary! I love feeding the birds but the squirrels are terrible about eating the bird food and even chew up the feeders. Its a never ending battle.
    Lisa

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    1. We get that here, also, Lisa. The squirrels sure are pigs!

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  7. Oh my stars. Too close for comfort! We do feed the birds, and haven't yet had any issues. Of course, this is more deer than bear country.
    Stay safe, y'all!

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    1. Thanks, Daisy! Everyone has their critters to deal with, no matter where they live, but the deer are definitely some of the most peaceful....even if they do love to eat the plants in your garden!

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  8. We have bears here. We stop feeding the birds when they wake up. I have lots of seedheads left standing for them (the birds) so it doesn't bother me so much-I still see them in the yard all the time.
    I figure the bears probably hate US being here. There are more and more people moving in around us--the bears territory is shrinking at an alarming rate. I feel bad for them.

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    1. So true, Sue. We invaded THEIR space. That doesn't mean I want him up on my deck though, ha ha! I worry about letting the pups out at night to do their business.

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  9. What a wake-up call! Take care, especially since the bears know where they can come for a bite to eat.

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    1. I'm hoping if he comes around a few times and finds nothing he'll move on. Fingers crossed!

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  10. Yikes! I can't believe what the bear did to your gate! I'd be so scared. We don't have bears here in northern IL, but I only feed the birds during the winter because in the warmer weather, the feeders only attract crows (noisy!) and woodpeckers (pecking at my house!).

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    1. Thankfully I've never had the woodpeckers pecking at my house, but I'm guessing that's because we are surrounded by trees....much tastier than my house!

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  11. I would be upset too. I don't know if I could deal with bear country. LOL I don't even like chipmunks around here...they are cute but very destructive. I would probably want an electric fence there. Be safe. Blessings, xoxo, Susie
    p.s. the pansies are so sweet.

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    1. The pansies are making me very happy when I look out my window, Susie! Springtime is just lovely, isn't it? Bears and all!

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  12. We get a lot of squirrels digging up plants and burying things in our yard, but bears! That's exactly why I told our youngest daughter who lives in the country not to plant apple trees near the house. I can't believe that bear came all the way up the stairs and broke your gate!!

    I don't feed birds in town because we get way too many pigeons- not my favorite bird.

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    1. I used to feed the birds when I lived in NYC and I was shocked I never attracted a bunch of pigeons! I did have a mockingbird, which was super cool - I've never had one up here!

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  13. We don't have bears, but we have pollen and that is what I hate about spring! ;)

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    1. I had to go back on my Allegra, Kim. I was suffering something awful this past weekend when I was doing spring cleanup in the garden! Terrible!! I sympathize with you, my friend!

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  14. Not good, way too close and scary! I'd be giving up feeding the birds, Debbie. We don't have bears (other than an occasional newsworthy black bear that may come out of the forest on the edge of the city limits), but enough deer, squirrels, rabbits and other unwanted varmints that I've pretty much quit feeding anything but hummers. I haven't even put my hummingbird feeder out just yet, and I'm middle south! Do keep safe.

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    1. Thanks, Rita! I'm taking the feeders in before dusk, now, but if he comes around during the day you better believe the birds are going to be out of luck!

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  15. Well Debbie: I had a cute little hummingbird feeder and the bear decided that he wanted something sweet to drink!! He broke it. I don't have bird feeders or hummer feeders anymore. The doggone bear even ate what was left of my suet fat. UGH!!!

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    1. Oh, what a nuisance, Cindy! A bear broke my sweetie's hummingbird feeder once also, they are definitely fond of that sweet water! Fingers crossed he leaves mine alone!

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  16. We have a cinnamon bear (he's really a black bear but his fur is red colored) that comes around once in a while. We haven't seen him this year, probably because our pot growing neighbors have pit bulls. I would rather have the bear. ;) Too bad he tore your gate and became a problem so early in the season. I will cross my fingers, hope and pray that he won't do any more damage!

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    1. Now I have to figure out how to repair the gate, Vickie! He came back the night after and made matchsticks out of it - what a brat he is!

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  17. We have bears, and I learned the hard way we can't feed the birds. I think you may remember a bear ripped our screen on the porch because I stupidly left garbage there one night.

    Hate to say it, but that hummingbird feeder will probably need to go too. Bears are pretty smart and won't be detered.

    XXX

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    1. That's so scary, Doreen! I've been afraid to leave my kitchen window open these days, which is a shame since I love getting fresh air in the house. But not while he's still around, that's for sure! There have been a few homes up here broken into by bears - that would just terrify me!

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  18. The list of what I hate about spring is pretty long. It is not one of my favorite times of year! And I would hate it even more if I had to contend with bears. In Texas, it is rattlesnakes...not a fun thing either! I don't know which animal is more frightful because they both do so much damage....just in different ways! Love and hugs and please take care around those things!!

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    1. Honestly, Benita, I think I'd take my bear over your rattlesnakes - oh my gosh, they would scare me to bits!! Hey, if your dream of living in the mountains comes true some day (please, God!) you will have to learn to live with the bears!

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  19. Oh no! Sorry to hear this. Hope the punk bear finds a new food route. I have to stop feeding the birds, when the snakes come out. I've had one checking out the area where I feed the birds, two days in a row. Love your flowers. I always love looking around your yard.

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    1. That is just too scary, Laurie, I think I'm more afraid of snakes than my bear!

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  20. Do be very careful with those bears! I think you might need a sturdier gate to keep them from coming up on your deck. We only feed the birds in the colder weather otherwise we'd have bird poop all over our small deck in the summer, and I really don't want to deal with that if I want to sit outside for awhile.

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    1. The size or scale of the gate won't make a difference, Carol - bears can climb like crazy - this one just chose not to!!

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  21. Lord have mercy he climbed clear up your steep stairs and then proceeded to destroy your gate!!?? I wouldnt mess with that one!! Hes bold-- and yes, like you said -- probably grouchy and starving.

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    1. I'm hoping he found a source of food somewhere else so he will leave my house alone!

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  22. I thought you were going to say "mud" for what you hated about spring, lol... no we don't have a bear nuisance problem around here, even though we do have bears. However, our dogs keep just about everything away from our property and we haven't had any issues, so far! I'm so sorry you can't put out your bird feeders and just leave them, that is just one extra thing you have to remember to do! So crazy... I hope he goes north and leaves you alone :)

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    1. You and me both, Marilyn! Are your dogs outside all the time? Mine did tree a bear last summer, but they aren't kept outside unless we are with them, so I guess they wouldn't really scare a bear off. Shame, isn't it?

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  23. Hello Debbie,
    Ugg! Bears can be so destructive. My dad lives in the Bitter Root Mountain Range in the Rockies and has to deal with them. Since we live on the prairie we do not contend with bears, but we do have to be cautious of mountain lions, who are sneaky. Since we have livestock, we also have to watch and guard against coyotes. But I wouldn't want to live anywhere else. I love my country life on the prairie.
    Blessings,
    Mrs.B

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    1. I hear you loud and clear, Mrs. B!! Same here, I'll take my country life with bears, bobcats, skunks, coyotes, porcupines, fox, you name it we've got it! But I would rather deal with the wildlife up here than the crime in the city!

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  24. Oh my goodness....sorry that grumpy bear did all that damage. We don't get bears here in town, but we do get deer, moose, coyotes, skunks, raccoons and the occasional mountain lion (now those are scary!). Praying the bear will go away and find another all you can eat buffet somewhere else.

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    1. Oh wow, mountain lions....I don't think we get those, although I could be wrong. I know we have bobcats, I've seen them a few times - scary, scary, scary!!

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  25. That is scary! And the gate would make me mad too. The birds should be grateful that you love them enough to go to the trouble to take feeders in my dusk. I've always said my husband runs a Hilton for the birds and squirrels but I don't know if he'd go to that trouble.

    We're not as much in the country here as we were at our old house so not even any raccoons or possums here going to the feeders at night. Do you have flying squirrels there? We had them at the old house and adored them. They would take food out of our hands at night if we'd approach them slowing as they sat on the bird feeders.

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    1. Wow, Dewena, I had forgotten all about the flying squirrels - I used to see them when I lived down in the valley, but since I've been on the mountain top I have not seen even one!

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  26. No bears, but we have Javelinas that dig up everything I try to put under the bird feeder. I used to think they were cute until they started destroying stuff, so I get why you wouldn't like having that bear around. It's scary that he was on your porch and I hope he stays away.

    xo

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