Sempervivum and Jovibarba forum: Birds in the semp beds

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Name: Patty
Washington State (Zone 8b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Patty
Mar 28, 2013 8:52 PM CST
Hurray! Just what I wanted to hear. Now if I can just keep that darn jay away! There is one bed where almost all the plants had been pulled up! Luckily they were all the same (purdy's big red) but if he messes with the others too much I may end up with more NOID's Crying
Patty 🌺
Name: Jackie
Michigan (Zone 5b)
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener
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Jookieblue
Mar 29, 2013 6:46 AM CST
A Blue Jay Patty? They like your semps? Yikes I better watch out for them then when I plant mine outside. Thumbs down
Name: Connie
Willamette Valley OR (Zone 8a)
Forum moderator Hybridizer Region: Pacific Northwest Lilies Sempervivums Sedums
Pollen collector I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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pardalinum
Mar 29, 2013 11:21 AM CST
It's not that the jays like the semps but they will look around to find recently disturbed soil to hoard nuts in. They will also root around for nuts they hoarded in the past. A freshly built bed for semps (or anything else planted) is like manna from heaven for jays. They are looking for soft soil that is easy to poke nuts into. Another thing to watch out for is the pulling of labels. The metal Eon type labels are ok, but they can and will pull out those plastic labels. I played this game with my jays a couple of years ago with a label in a container. This one bird would pull it out and drop it on the ground outside the container. I would put it back in and sit on my patio step waiting. I didn't even have to hide; he would come back and repeat his little activity and this happened over and over just 15 feet off my patio.

Name: Patty
Washington State (Zone 8b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Patty
Mar 29, 2013 11:30 AM CST
They are actually Scrub Jays (like a blue jay but scrubbier Rolling on the floor laughing ) and they get into everything else ... Dog food, cherries etc and I know they bury acorns in the beds. So I guess they are the most likely suspects since we have no squirrels and the new bed soil has no worms. Last night I replanted semps and first thing this morning a bunch were uprooted again! Angry
Patty 🌺
Name: Connie
Willamette Valley OR (Zone 8a)
Forum moderator Hybridizer Region: Pacific Northwest Lilies Sempervivums Sedums
Pollen collector I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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pardalinum
Mar 29, 2013 11:37 AM CST
Patty, I think you need a night vision semp cam...
Name: Jackie
Michigan (Zone 5b)
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener
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Jookieblue
Mar 29, 2013 11:45 AM CST
That's to funny. My friend does metal hand stamping and she is going to make me my semp markers and then start selling those on her Etsy site. She's really good. When I get those and my new babies I will take pics. At least I wont have to worry about our Jay's and squirrels getting the labels. Have to watch out for other animals though and find some way to keep them out of the beds. Thumbs down
Name: Kate
S Wales UK (Zone 9a)
Region: Wales Region: United Kingdom Cat Lover Sempervivums Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener
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Eviesmummy
Mar 29, 2013 12:37 PM CST
Semp cam - I love it! Rolling on the floor laughing

Jackie, the markers sound great! Looking forwards to seeing pics when you get them.
Kate UK
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
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valleylynn
Mar 29, 2013 9:39 PM CST

Moderator

I just found out this evening that the Rufus Sided Towhees also love to pull the plants up, along with a couple of other tiny finches.
They were having a field day while I was just 3 beds away from them. And here I've been blaming it all on the Blue Jays. Sad
Name: Greg Colucci
Seattle WA (Zone 8b)
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gg5
Mar 29, 2013 11:28 PM CST
Connie what a cute story!! Maybe the jay was trying to tell you it was the wrong label! Hilarious! Whistling
Plants bring me peace and calm, more of what we all need Smiling
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
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valleylynn
Mar 30, 2013 3:05 AM CST

Moderator

Connie has your jay been up to any other mischief lately? Would have been great if you had a camera handy.
I really do think they have a playful streak.
Name: Jackie
Michigan (Zone 5b)
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener
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Jookieblue
Mar 30, 2013 7:52 AM CST
Bluejays here get really mean I know. I feed the birds weekly and if you have a platform feeder those suckers get really greedy not to mention how loud they are Smiling

Greg that was funny. I would love to see them caught on cam as well! Try and snap some pic's
Name: Connie
Willamette Valley OR (Zone 8a)
Forum moderator Hybridizer Region: Pacific Northwest Lilies Sempervivums Sedums
Pollen collector I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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pardalinum
Mar 30, 2013 12:08 PM CST
valleylynn said:Connie has your jay been up to any other mischief lately? Would have been great if you had a camera handy.
I really do think they have a playful streak.


Those jays are gone now. They probably don't live but a few years. But I have a few photos I took in 2007. There were two birds in particular that stood out; I named them Heckle and Jeckle with Heckle being the one I adored and amused me the most. I believe they were siblings and very young when they first appeared in my yard. I provided peanuts and they provided the entertainment:

Here is Heckle moving in on a bag of peanuts, just off my patio:

Thumb of 2013-03-30/pardalinum/867467

Moving in on it:

Thumb of 2013-03-30/pardalinum/cfd551

I moved the bag to the step just outside the sliding patio door. The next two photos look a little funny because they were very dark and I had to lighten them up to be able to see the bird. Note that I was standing right inside lthe door for the photo:

Thumb of 2013-03-30/pardalinum/183eb9

Here Heckle is trying to figure out how to get to those peanuts!

Thumb of 2013-03-30/pardalinum/ee32de

Heckle would routinely come into my kitchen for a few peanuts if the door was left open. Sidekick Jeckle was always around but not so brave. But he had it figured that he could just steal Heckle's nuts after watching where they were cached. And that kept Heckle coming back for more.

I learned a lot about jays during the three years those two were here. I had read about how smart they were and I witnessed the proof. Heckle was pretty cheeky, to say the least. I always kept a few nuts in my pocket when working in the yard. Every where I worked, Heckle was there. And when I looked around, I would see Jeckle watching from a distance. Even when I sat in a lawn chair Heckle would cautiously sidle up and snatch a nut off my shoe.
Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
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goldfinch4
Mar 30, 2013 1:22 PM CST

Moderator

That's pretty cool Connie. They are awfully smart - and brave.
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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
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valleylynn
Mar 30, 2013 8:24 PM CST

Moderator

I just love that story Connie. A special gardening friend.
Name: Jackie
Michigan (Zone 5b)
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener
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Jookieblue
Mar 30, 2013 8:48 PM CST
Connie what a great story for us! I love my birdies. Especially my pretty gold finches and the way the morning doves sound when your waking up. So peaceful. I guess I didnt realize either how smart those jays are. Yours had such pretty markings compared to ours here in Michigan. I used to feed my little pet squirrel who I names Ellie peanuts and popcorn from my front porch as a child and it was so fun to try and see how close you could get.
Name: Greg Colucci
Seattle WA (Zone 8b)
Sempervivums Sedums Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
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gg5
Mar 30, 2013 11:01 PM CST
Great story and photos Connie! I tip my hat to you. nodding
Plants bring me peace and calm, more of what we all need Smiling
Name: Connie
Willamette Valley OR (Zone 8a)
Forum moderator Hybridizer Region: Pacific Northwest Lilies Sempervivums Sedums
Pollen collector I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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pardalinum
Mar 30, 2013 11:12 PM CST
My current crew of scrub jays are very naughty Angry . They have totally destroyed the coir lining of a succulent basket thingy and strewed the stuff all over the top of the semps and it is very difficult to pick it off. I've put it on the back burner because I don't have time to mess with it but I am going to grumble about it anyway!!
Name: Greg Colucci
Seattle WA (Zone 8b)
Sempervivums Sedums Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
Garden Art Birds Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: Pacific Northwest Hummingbirder
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gg5
Mar 30, 2013 11:21 PM CST
Sorry Connie! Man, it seems like the animals have gotten "bad" this year Thumbs down Thumbs down I gave a friend many many semps in the fall, and squirrels got all but 4 she told me Thumbs down Ah well, sorry Group hug
Plants bring me peace and calm, more of what we all need Smiling
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Mar 31, 2013 3:39 AM CST

Moderator

Nesting season is upon them. I saw a crow gathering tree moss the other day. It had a huge wad that it was compacting in preparation for take off. I love watching them.
Name: Greg Colucci
Seattle WA (Zone 8b)
Sempervivums Sedums Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
Garden Art Birds Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: Pacific Northwest Hummingbirder
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gg5
Mar 31, 2013 8:41 PM CST
I do too Lynn, even though they're noisy and can also wreck havoc in a garden and in the trash! They are very entertaining! I tip my hat to you.
Plants bring me peace and calm, more of what we all need Smiling

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