Today at the Landings: 68 °F

Birds

By Beth Roth - bethheron@bellsouth.net
Former Landings Resident

Between mid-September and late February, the non-nesting season for most birds and animals, is the time to check your property and decide what work you’d like to have done on your landscaping.

Plan now since this is the time you really can see what needs work, while everything is in full bloom, and you can contract with a tree company.

We have a very impressive variety of birds and wildlife on our island because of the availability of desirable habitat for them. Live trees, dead trees, and branches provide food and shelter for birds and wildlife year-round. It’s important to keep a portion of our property natural so that wildlife have cover and can root for seeds and insects.

You may have noticed birds shuffling and pecking at the ground. There is a ground smorgasbord of different stages of bug life, seeds, berries, acorns, etc., for wildlife to feed on. It also is costly to remove, replant, water, and maintain manicured areas. Of course, you may want to tidy up areas, and every seedling cannot grow into a tree. By being a gardening neatnik, over cleaning and spraying, you won’t see many birds.

It is equally important to avoid broadcasting garden chemicals in such feeding grounds (which also goes into our water system). The effects of such chemicals are cumulative, and we should avoid feeding wildlife such additives, as much as we avoid consuming them ourselves. From time to time, some of these chemicals, which are thought to be safe, are taken off the market.

As you know, the growth in our area is tremendous. Without some maintenance, we wouldn’t be able to get through the gates and drive around our beautiful island.

While you are inspecting your property, be sure to check for invasive Chinese Tallow Trees. This very invasive tree thrives in all habitats and is very prolific. If you look for little heart-shaped leaves popping out of the ground, I guarantee you’ll find many to pull. This means there possibly is a nearby Tallow Tree. As these Tallow Trees lose their leaves in the fall, their beautiful yellow/orange leaves stand out and are easy to spot.

Good birding, and keep the island safe for wildlife and for us.

Pictured at left is an orange-crowned warbler. According to birdwatchersdigest.com, this is one of the few species that winter in Georgia and arrives around late-September.