Sunday, 29 November 2015

Reddy Is Prepared

This area has had plenty of frost but we have yet to receive a covering of snow. I'm ready for it now. In fact, I'm looking forward to it. I've replaced my car's summer tires with winter ones and made sure my snow blower is ready for action. I've even purchased a new set of footwear ice creepers to replace the ones I wore out last season.

Also winter prepared is my very cute red squirrel neighbour, Reddy. He's plump beneath his thick fur coat and he has been busy.

Between the house and the honey bee yard is a stand of evergreen trees, planted by my parents about seventy years ago. I've noticed the little squirrel hanging out on the ground there recently. Now I see what it was up to. Spruce cones -- piles of them now placed neatly in little caches for seed meals needed in the frigid months ahead.

Spruce cones stuff an old log. Reddy has been busy!

Dozens of these cone middens lie scattered about the area.

These soft maples are considered weed trees but Reddy loves their key seeds.

Apples are peeled to help them dry faster before being stored away.

What other squirrely grocery treasures lay stashed inside that box?

Friday, 6 November 2015

November Picnic

Although it's the time of year I usually install my car's snow tires, the past few days have been quite balmy. In fact, yesterday the temperature was 21 degrees Celsius.

My honeybees were flying about looking for something in bloom. They searched in vain. Many frigid months lie ahead so extending their pantry reserves would be ideal. The hives are now wearing their snow suits and the top box in which I would normally place syrup feeders are full of wood chips for moisture control and for insulation. An outdoor picnic would have to do.

A party of fourteen lapping sugar syrup from a container lid.

I scored grooves on a piece of scrap lumber with the table saw.

Having plugged the ends with beeswax (of course), it made a handy nectar feeder.

The start of a slightly 'up market'  feeder.

Two jar feeder contraptions ready for action.

The bee above the wire support appears to be pretty full and slightly tipsy.