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Bluebirds Growing, Trouble at Cardinal Nest, Bears, Danville Trail #1 in Virginia

By: WeatherWise , 8:35 PM GMT on June 08, 2014

Bluebirds are doing great! You can see that they have developed a nail from this photo and the feathers are popping through. They will be flying away before I know it.

Okay, I am getting really ill now. I have typed this little part about the Cardinal's Nest about 3 times now and it disappears as I am scrolling down to click submit. What is the deal? Is there some cyber troll hanging out in the gully of the scroll bar. It seems to be.

It seems that the cowbird has slipped into the cardinal's nest and tossed an egg to the ground and replaced it with one of its big egg.

Cowbirds do this. They do not build a nest but spend all of their time laying eggs in other birds nest. This little blip is from a website on cowbirds. I did not know the number of eggs was that high.

http://www.birdsamore.com/byb/cowbird-brown-heade d.htm

Cowbirds rely on other birds to raise their young. The cowbird eggs hatch sooner and the cowbird chick is much larger than the host's chicks. The hosts feed the larger and more demanding cowbird chicks first which often lead to the demise of their own offspring.

This is believed to have cut the eastern woodland birds by half and even entire species of birds have nearly vanished. There are over 200 species of birds that can be the recipient of their actions with warblers and vireos usually being the unsuspected host. Cowbirds can lay as many as 80 eggs in one season.

AllAboutBirds website does not give a number so big. The say three dozen which is still a lot considering most birds lay 2 to 5 and perhaps 1 to 2 clutches.

http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Brown-headed_C owbird/id
I have typeded this part of the entry so many times that I am not sure what I have in here. Did I say how disappointed I am and how I should not be as it is natures way and that sure did not make me feel any better. I am saving this one line at a time and NOT using the scroll bar as it seems to eat every thing I have typed. I am clicking in a white space outside of text box and then using arrow keys to get down to the submit or update button. Anyone else dealing with such?

Another news article by Denice Thibodeau from the Register and Bee caught my attention today, Monday, June 9:

Franklin TurnpikeBear sightings 'pretty common right now'

It seems that a guy that works for the newspaper spotted this bear crossing the road as he was heading home yesterday. He said it was over six feet tall and that it would have filled up the bed of his truck.

From the news article, it did not sound like the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries was very interested in doing anything about relocating it.

Article From today's local paper: The Register and BeeLink

Danville trail named No. 1 in Virginia, attracting visitors from all over

Posted: Sunday, June 8, 2014 12:00 am

Special to the Register & Bee

The scenic trails of Danville's Angler’s Ridge are designed for all skill levels from beginner to expert.

Biking at Angler’s Ridge is a year-round sport. With great drainage along the hilly terrain, the trails never close due to weather. In addition, the Boy Scouts built a bike wash to clean off any mud after a ride.

From the easier trails such as Riverside Drive, which is a relatively flat shaded ride alongside creeks and through the woods, to the difficult trails like Witchback and Hidden Hollow, which are more technical with climbs, descends and switchbacks, the Angler’s Ridge Trails draw riders of all skill levels from across the country.

As the miles of trails and the core group of riders increased, the Southern Virginia Mountain Bike Association was formed. Their mission is to promote mountain biking in the area and maintain the trails. The group partnered with Danville Parks and Recreation to use the area for the trail system.

Danville area is fairly hilly with mountaint biking trails that match any in the state of Virginia.

It turns and twists uphill and downhill known as the the Angler’s Ridge mountain bike trail system and its 35 miles of stacked-loop single-track trails is ranked No. 1 in Virginia — and 32nd in the world according to the article in the newspaper.

The trails pass through scenic area and adapt to all levels from beginner to expert. The trails are said to have plenty of gravity drops, log pyramids, tight switchbacks, moguls, rock gardens and 40 bridges to challenge you as you bike along through complete with creeks and wildlife.

You can read Okeefe's article with the following link with more detailed descriptions.


The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

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10. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
9:48 PM GMT on June 12, 2014
WeatherWise has created a new entry.
9. calpoppy
1:34 PM GMT on June 12, 2014
I really like the magnolia flower, very nicely photographed! Baby birds just look like a pile of fluff when they are very young, LOL! We have 3 fledgling ravens right now that are as noisy as little kids. We feed the parents peanuts in which they store in their beak, get a drink of water and go off to feed the kids. Between the fledgling ravens and our peacocks, our mornings are quite noisy!
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
8. WeatherWise
1:24 AM GMT on June 12, 2014

Hi Briarcraft, Hope your DH is okay, today. Thank you for the complement on my blog.

I am using my desktop computer. WOW, re the bear on the freeway, guess it was just natural reaction to swerve and try to avoid hitting it. I have read and heard that about deer - not to to try to avoid hitting it, but suspect it is just a natural reaction.

Most folks don't know about cowbirds. It is absurd, isn't it? Yes the trails are exciting and definitely encourage folks to get out and enjoy the day.

Not much going on here except excessive heat and late day storms. I try to get my walk in before the heat of the day. I did good in getting out a bit earlier today. I still want to get out a bit earlier even.

HOpe everyone had a wonderful day!

My latest photo:


Beauty Rest - 7 Days OldStrong Thunderstorms on RadarBluebirdLittle Daddy Bluebird


Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
7. BriarCraft
12:09 AM GMT on June 12, 2014
What an interesting and informative blog! You have outdone yourself on this one, despite the problems you have with the scroll bar. I seldom use the scroll bar, preferring the scroll wheel on my mouse most of the time. Are you using a desktop computer or something else? Whatever you are using, I suggest you leave feedback at http://help.wunderground.com/forums/233172-new-si te-design. Angela Fritz and the WU Product Team have both said they may or may not see anything posted in their blogs, but they do look carefully at everything entered in the New Site Design feedback forum. Be sure to include info about your computer and operating system to help them pin down the problem.

The turnpike bear sightings you talk about remind me of the last time my DH drove to San Diego to tend to business. He was driving along the I-5 freeway in the mountains of far northern California when a bear ran across the freeway and ran into the side of his car. When he saw the bear, he swerved and braked, but as it turned out it would have been better if he had just kept going. The bear dented the right rear fender of the car!

Nasty old cowbirds! The moral of that story is if you spot a cowbird egg in a nest, dump it out.

I can see why Angler's Ridge trails are highly rated. It looks like a beautiful place. This country needs more places like that to attract people to enjoy the outdoors and get some exercise.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
6. WeatherWise
9:34 PM GMT on June 10, 2014
Hi Sandi. Thanks for dropping by. That is neat about the exercise stations along the trails. I did not know they were all along the trail until I read the article. I knew there was one by the wildflower garden which used to be my turn around point. Lately, I have been walking a bit farther. And my friend corrects me when I say exercise station by the wildflower garden and puts it the other way that there are wildflowers growing at the entrance to the exercise area. BUT to me I was walking to the wildflower garden.

Wow! Yes, that is a big baby. Now, that I have seen your photo, it reminds me of babies bigger than the mother and I bet that it was a cowbird baby being raised by a little bird. Great photo!

I agree, GG! Boo to the cowbirds trying to sneak into the pretty cardinal's nest. Funny story you told. There are some theories about the cowbirds and why they do it...something about following the buffalo.

My latest photos:

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
5. sandiquiz
11:56 AM GMT on June 10, 2014
The city I live in is a new city, only 50 years old. When the parks and lake walks were designed, around their perimeters were placed lots of 'exercise' stations.

When I first got here, twenty years ago, I could lift myself off the floor and swing on these bars...but not now. Too old, too stiff and now, 'too weighty'!! lol

Reading about your cowbird reminds me of our "cuckoo", who does the same. It uses the tiny reed warbler nest to lay its eggs, and then as the cuckoo egg hatches, it pushes all the reed warbler eggs out of the nest, and the parent birds go on to feed the cuckoo until it fledges!
This is a great photo of the two!

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
4. GardenGrrl
10:17 AM GMT on June 10, 2014
Yay bluebirds, boo cow birds. I wonder if their MO is the basis for folk stories about elves swapping their demanding children for human children until they eat the unsuspecting host out of house and home?
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
3. WeatherWise
12:12 AM GMT on June 09, 2014
My latest photos:

Feed Me! Feed Me!ButterflyIn the Butterfly GardenButterfly              
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2. palmettobug53
11:01 PM GMT on June 08, 2014
What a marvelous group of bike trails.

I'd be one of the ones out for a leisurely ride, sightseeing as I went.

I haven't been out and about here on WU much lately, so just now caught your cardinal nest with eggs. How cool!

We have a pair that nests in the neighborhood every year but I've never seen their nest.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
1. WeatherWise
8:47 PM GMT on June 08, 2014
I thought this was quite interesting and sounds like it is perhaps something completely different from the Riverwalk trail- a lot of bikers on the trail. Perhaps they are connected or perhaps they think they are on the the biking trails. It is always funny how something is right under you but no one seems to know where it really is. Sounds like something my son might enjoy even though I am certain they have neat options in the Blacksburg area as well.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:

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Always Wondering About the Weather

About WeatherWise

Always wondering about the weather and looking for any wildlife, flower, bird, deer, butterfly, trees, etc. on daily walks with camera in hand.

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