Adventures in Crows, Bird Calls, and Composting

Category: Blog, branching out conservation for everyone, Community Resilience, Growing Community with Nature, Hidden Nature

By LandPaths Staff

April 1, 2020

Over the next few weeks, as we all shelter-in-place in Sonoma County, we are sharing uplifting stories from LandPaths’ staff about how they are discovering the hidden and not-so-hidden nature in their own neighborhoods. In this installment, Senior Bilingual Field Specialist Guadalupe Casco shares about the lively bird life in her yard.

In the last two weeks, I’ve been home more often. As a result, I’ve noticed so many new things in my backyard.

I’ve noticed that I share a living space with a flicker friend. I’ve seen him in my front and back yards almost every day. He will fly from tree to tree and make calls. Sometimes I can’t see him but I can hear him close by. He likes to peck and look for food in my front yard and likes to sing and make calls in the dead tree behind my house. I wonder what all his different calls mean.

I’ve also noticed all the action and drama from the murder of crows (that’s what a ‘flock’ of crows is called apparently!) that appear to dominate the sky space above my yard. I’ve seen them chase out hawks and falcons. It’s like an intense air-chase where the murder always gets their way!

I’ve seen ravens, turkey vultures, hawks, small song birds and hummingbirds. Hearing their commotion is like hearing the sky radio–so much going on! 

As I listen to the birds, I’ve also been experimenting with starting my own compost pile at home. I planted some fava beans a few months ago that are starting to look ready. I am trying to do things that will slowly increase my soil’s health. Cover crops and compost is how I’m starting. 

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