Friday, April 21, 2017

So Nice Hearing Hummers Again

The sights and sounds around here just keep improving!

Male ruby-throats showed up, then male Baltimore orioles, then female ruby-throats, and now a male orchard oriole. Our little flocks are beginning to move back in!

Re-orders are coming in from our retail outlets. So the ruby-throated migration is in full swing with them returning to their breeding areas.

Watch for mating dances - deep, fast swoops back and forth - as he shows off for the lady.

We're going to a new-to-us area next weekend. We'll be in Huntington, WV, at the Big Sandy Arena for the Dogwood Arts & Crafts Festival. We hope to make a stop at our favorite WV glass maker - Blenko in Milton - as well.

As the hummers return, remember to keep the nectar fresh for them. If the feeder isn't empty after 3-5 days, dump it out, clean it, and refill it with fresh nectar. If you want to use pre-packaged nectar, we recommend only EZ Nectar, made from ONLY sugar and water with no additives or preservatives. Enter coupon code ozarklake at checkout for savings!

Hummingbird fact for today: The Aztecs were one of the first known cultures to embrace the beauty and representation of the Hummingbird. They wore talismans that had Hummingbirds on them as a symbol of the vigor of their people.

Friday, April 14, 2017

First Ruby-Throat Has Arrived!

Our first ruby-throat of the season arrived on April 10, 3-6 days sooner than any have ever arrived. So far he seems to be alone, but more will surely show up.

We've been to two shows this spring, one in Fort Smith, AR, and one in Evansville, IN. So despite a slower show season, wholesale orders have kept us hopping, with some new locations ordering. Last week we sent orders to Inspired! Gift Shop in Port Angeles, WA, and to Awakenings in Pleasanton, CA. Now we're working on orders for the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks in Fayetteville, AR, and Frames of Mind in St. John, VI.

Here's a complete list of retail locations that carry Ozarklake items:
Coronado National Monument Gift Store, Hereford, AZ
Botanical Garden of the Ozarks, Fayetteville, AR
Awakenings, Pleasanton, CA
An Artisan's Marketplace, Plainville, CT
The Secret Shed, Shererville, IN
Alley Gallery, Marion, IA
The Owl House, Saugatuck, MI
The Hermann Mercantile, Hermann, MO
Tar Heel Trading Co., Corolla & Duck, NC
A Bird's Eye View, Littleton, NC
Stewart's Village Gallery, Waxhaw, NC
Blue Heron Gallery, Sunset Beach, NC
When Pigz Fly, Raleigh, NC
Beech Branch Arts & Crafts, Gatlinburg, TN
Rio Grande Valley Arts & Heritage Museum, Harlingen, TX
SPI Birding and Nature Center, South Padre Island, TX
Inspired! Gift Shop, Port Angeles, WA
Dickinson & Wait Craft Gallery, Shepherdstown, WV
Frames of Mind, St. John, VI

Everyone who feed hummers knows that sometimes ants will find your birdfeeder, especially if you're feeding nectar or fruit. They just march right down whatever the feeder is hanging on and march right in to the sweet stuff. Using pesticides, oils, or anything that is sticky is bad for the birds. They can be poisoned with pesticides, all oils can get on their feathers (they're tiny and fast and curious) and affect their flying ability, and something sticky (like inside-out duct tape) can actually entrap the little hummingbirds. 

 So what's the answer??? Ants do not swim! In fact, since they breathe through their skin, they actually suffocate in water. Enter our new AntSentry. Hang the AntSentry from the hook that your feeder was on, hang your feeder from the bottom hook of the AntSentry, fill the copper bowl with water. Ants might march down from the top hook, but the water moat keeps them from marching on down to the feeder. Our AntSentry is handcrafted in the same style as our feeders, but will be a beautiful accessory for any feeder. The solid copper will last a lifetime, and certainly a lot longer than the plastic ant moats you can find in the big box stores. The copper bowl is 2" across, and 1.5" deep. Just watch for evaporation and replenish with water when needed. You can order your here

Hummingbird fact for today: As with most of our migratory birds, hummingbirds apparently evolved to their present forms during the last ice age. They were (and largely still are) tropical birds, but as the great ice sheets retreated from North America, they gradually expanded their ranges to exploit rich temperate food resources and nesting space, filling unoccupied niches in the U.S and southern Canada while evading intense competition in the tropics. Ruby-throated hummingbirds spend the summer months in the eastern half of the US and some provinces. Watch the migration map fill in with dates of "first" sightings.