Saturday, February 23, 2008

Why our bird seed bill is so high.

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By LindaK

This image was in the U Tube video I made last week. I am showing it again in case you missed the background. Everyone is waiting for Dan and his seeds. The blue birds prefer mealy worms, but will eat the sunflower seeds.


The picture is dark, but notice the finch are watching the door from where I took the picture and from where Dan will soon appear with his seeds.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Sisterhood

My friendship with Sue and Jeanne began in early marriage, not childhood. Still, at our age, we have history.

Monday evening found the three of us around Sue's fire enjoying delicious wine, lasagna and conversation. There are no confessions or tears. We discuss children, grandchildren, politics, travel, and right now the biggest topic, retirement. We celebrate friendship through life’s enviable changes and losses.

These special friends are my sisters in a one-brother family. And as with family, whether we see each other in weeks or months, there is comfort in sharing our lives, past, present and future.

Thank you, Sue, for reminding us to take time for family friends.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Horsehair worm


Say hello to a horsehair worm. Dan walked out the back door and found it on top of the snow. It turns out these little guys are quite the opportunistic nematodes.

Some people still believe a strand of horsehair that drops into a troth of water comes to life in the form of this worm. It has no circulation but lives for about six months by reproducing, digesting and generally enjoying life.

First, it must mature inside a host insect such as a cricket, grasshopper or roach. Water is their friend, finding its host insect there. When ready, it breaks out of the host, killing it in the process. They are harmless, do not infect humans and may help control the undesirable insects acting as its host.

Another name for this common worm is Gordian. It may be found in a pool of water or as it is by the pencil in what is called a Gordian knot. In ancient Greece, a man with the family name of Gordias ruled a small kingdom. He tied his cart with a knot and an oracle decreeded the man who would untie it would become the king of Asia (now Asia Minor). Alexander the Great, wintering there, could not untie it so he took out a knife and cut the knot.

Back to how this harmless free-living worm showed up on our doorstep. Well, I guess there are some things we are not meant to know.