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Connie Smith (grandmapearl)

Joined 6 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

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Hi, my name is Connie Smith, aka Grandma Pearl. I have always been interested in the behavior of birds. When I was only 8 years old, I found the remnants of a beautiful blue egg. Asking my grandfather what bird had laid such a colorful egg, he began to tell me about robins.

My brothers and sister and I were very fortunate to have lived in a rural area filled with wildlife. In addition, our house was just up the road from my grandparents' home. The field to and from each property played host to many different kinds of insects, butterflies, bees and birds. You name it, we were able to observe it. We visited our grandparents often as the well-worn path through that field would testify.

My grandfather being a very knowledgeable nature-lover patiently imparted some of his vast wisdom to us. He taught us how to look at plants and bugs through a magnifying glass. Once we saw how intricate and beautiful regular old weeds and insects could be, we were hooked! It was then a natural transition to look at birds with a more discerning eye.

Watching and listening to the birds at my grandmother's feeder, I began to identify their songs and the different color variations between males and females. Grandma fed the birds all year long, so I was able to observe them during all kinds of weather and temperatures. It amazed me that they were so active even on the coldest winter days! (I know now it was a matter of survival.)

Making sure our backyard birds have nutritious food year round, good quality nest boxes and bird houses in which to shelter and raise their young, and a non-toxic environment in which to live is extremely important.

I take great pride in knowing I can make a difference in the survival of our feathered friends. Helping others to understand the benefits and enjoyment of nurturing our backyard birds through my articles extends my grandparents' legacy to me. I'm sure they would be very pleased to see how far their caring kindness has reached!

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Some of My Favorites:

Bluebirds: The Challenges They Face and How We Can Help

15 Myths About Wild Birds

7 Natural Ways to Entice Orioles to Your Yard

Amazing Starlings: The Good, the Bad, the Bold and the Beautiful

Hummingbirds, Little Flying Jewels

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This is a very cool community of supportive writers. You could even earn money for your endeavors! If you love to write and want to share your unique insights and expertise, why not join hubpages.

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I am honored that my article Are You Losing the War Against Snails and Slugs was chosen as Hub of the Day!

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  • Pets and Animals (29)
  • How Thirsty Are Your Wild Birds?
    14

    How Thirsty Are Your Wild Birds?

    4 years ago

    The ground is frozen and there is no snow. What’s a thirsty bird supposed to do? All life requires water to stay healthy year round. Providing fresh drinkable water is a lot easier in the summertime, but it is...

  • Make a Holiday Bird Feeder Wreath & Stop Window Collisions
    18

    Make a Holiday Bird Feeder Wreath & Stop Window Collisions

    3 years ago

    Have you ever heard that heart-sinking ‘thud’ against your window; and you know immediately that one of your beautiful birds has met with a terrible fate? Here’s a beautiful and easy idea to keep this from...

  • Want to Make Your Wild Birds Happy?  Feed Them Nuts!
    32

    Want to Make Your Wild Birds Happy? Feed Them Nuts!

    3 years ago

    If you want to make your wild birds happy, nuts are sure to put a smile on their beaks! For fall and winter treats they can’t be beat. Discover their favorites, and the best way to serve them.

  • Coffee Lovers Alert:  Are You Unknowingly Killing Our Songbirds?
    24

    Coffee Lovers Alert: Are You Unknowingly Killing Our Songbirds?

    4 years ago

    Did you know that your choice of coffee can mean life or death to our beautiful song birds? Millions of our familiar backyard birds migrate to the forests of Latin America only to find their winter homes have...

  • How to Make a Hummingbird Feeder Wreath
    22

    How to Make a Hummingbird Feeder Wreath

    19 months ago

    If hummingbirds don’t seem to visit your yard, or you want to add a beautiful decorative statement to your windows while attracting even more hummers, this easy-to-make hummingbird feeder wreath will surely help the...

  • Keep It Between the Ditches
    33

    Keep It Between the Ditches

    4 years ago

    Have you ever thought about ditches as anything more than a place by the side of the road? There are thousands of miles of ditches in the U.S. that are essential wildlife habitats worth preserving.

  • The Truth About Turkey Vultures
    14

    The Truth About Turkey Vultures

    4 years ago

    A pretty face isn't everything! Turkey Vultures are not at all the creatures of evil as Hollywood has often implied. Did you know they can live for 30 years or more, despite what they eat? Did you know they do not...

  • Create Safe Bird Habitats With Climbing Roses
    15

    Create Safe Bird Habitats With Climbing Roses

    4 years ago

    I may be old fashioned, but to me there is nothing that compares to a rose. The fragrance and beauty of older heirlooms, wild roses and new varieties just cannot be beat. Choose climbing roses, and you automatically...

  • The Juncos I Have Come to Know
    22

    The Juncos I Have Come to Know

    4 years ago

    It might be easy to overlook Dark-Eyed Juncos because of their gray and brown colorations. But it is impossible to overlook their helpful and voracious weed seed and insect-eating appetite. Come discover more about...

  • Top 5 Alternative Lawn Ideas
    18

    Top 5 Alternative Lawn Ideas

    4 years ago

    If you are tired of mowing lawn every time you have a day off, then you are a prime candidate for an alternative lawn. If you want to be surrounded by fragrance, beauty, birds, butterflies and beneficial insects, then...

  • Finches Come in All the Colors of the Rainbow
    27

    Finches Come in All the Colors of the Rainbow

    3 months ago

    Members of the finch family represent all the colors of the rainbow, and more. These seed- and fruit-loving birds literally come in each of the five colors, plus white and black!

  • Attract Birds You Have Never Seen Before With Fruit
    10

    Attract Birds You Have Never Seen Before With Fruit

    4 years ago

    Fruits of all kinds are welcomed by our bird friends. The old standbys, like apples and oranges can be supplemented to attract a larger variety of birds to your yard. Tropical fruits including mangoes and papayas may...

  • How Do Birds Get Their Colors?
    15

    How Do Birds Get Their Colors?

    20 months ago

    Have you ever wondered why some birds have iridescent patches; or why Northern Cardinals are red; or what makes Blue Jays blue? How dull would life be without the colors that punctuate our lives? Everywhere you look...

  • The Sounds of Hummingbirds
    14

    The Sounds of Hummingbirds

    2 months ago

    While in flight, at the nectar feeder, fending off intruders, or enjoying a rain shower on a hot summer day, Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds constantly communicate and vocalize. Read about these ‘songs’ and you will...

  • 8 Easy Ways to Landscape Under Bird Feeders
    39

    8 Easy Ways to Landscape Under Bird Feeders

    22 months ago

    Do you have an unsightly bare spot under your bird feeders? Most of us do, but there are options for making that area as pretty as the rest of your yard. Discover my 8 easy solutions for transforming the space under...

  • 5 Tips to a Bird Safe Yard
    16

    5 Tips to a Bird Safe Yard

    4 years ago

    Is your yard safe for your feathered friends? Check out solutions for eliminating 5 common dangers you may have overlooked. Make your yard a healthy habitat for backyard birds.

  • How and Why to Attract Owls to Your Backyard
    42

    How and Why to Attract Owls to Your Backyard

    4 years ago

    Beautiful, elegant and intelligent, owls are also very efficient at reducing rodent populations. That makes them a gardener’s best friend. Learn how to attract these amazing birds to your backyard.

  • Briar Patches Are For the Birds!
    20

    Briar Patches Are For the Birds!

    4 years ago

    That’s right--they love ‘em! Plant even a small briar patch and you’re almost guaranteed to see birds that have never visited your yard before. There’s a large variety of berry plants from which to choose,...

  • 12 Fun Ways to Get Kids Involved in Bird Watching
    12

    12 Fun Ways to Get Kids Involved in Bird Watching

    4 years ago

    My love of birds started when I helped my grandmother put food out for them. Here are lots of ways to nurture the love of birds in your kids.

  • Create a Beneficial Rain Garden:  A Mini Wetland Habitat for Birds
    14

    Create a Beneficial Rain Garden: A Mini Wetland Habitat for Birds

    4 years ago

    Rainwater gardens are both beautiful and practical; they filter and purify water runoff and provide a wildlife habitat for birds and butterflies, plus, they're easy to maintain. Create step by step.

  • Mouse and Rat Poison:  What They're Not Telling Us
    31

    Mouse and Rat Poison: What They're Not Telling Us

    18 months ago

    Second generation rodent killing chemicals are indiscriminately poisoning our children, pets and wildlife. In fact, rodenticides are killing off the natural rodent controls at an alarming rate, leaving us to face the...

  • How to Make a Bird Nesting Basket in 5 Easy Steps
    67

    How to Make a Bird Nesting Basket in 5 Easy Steps

    20 months ago

    This is an easy project that will benefit your baby birds by keeping them hidden from predators. In just 5 easy steps you can make this beautiful hanging bird nesting basket. You might even want to make more than one!

  • Best Tips to Attract Northern Cardinals to Your Yard
    10

    Best Tips to Attract Northern Cardinals to Your Yard

    4 years ago

    If you are longing for the sights and sounds of everyone's favorite redbird, the beautiful Northern Cardinals, follow my easy plan to create a cardinal habitat. Give them what they like and you are sure to catch sight...

  • How to Stop Woodpeckers from Damaging Your House
    12

    How to Stop Woodpeckers from Damaging Your House

    21 months ago

    If woodpeckers are causing damage to your house, and driving you crazy with their drumming, then help is here! Find out why they do it, and how to stop them.

  • How to Feed Your Backyard Birds Without Going Broke
    30

    How to Feed Your Backyard Birds Without Going Broke

    5 years ago

    If the price of black oil sunflower seed has discouraged you from feeding your backyard birds, consider using some or all of my 9 ways to stretch your bird seed dollar. Some of them may even surprise you!

  • Brown-Headed Cowbird:  Not Such a Bad Egg After All
    12

    Brown-Headed Cowbird: Not Such a Bad Egg After All

    5 years ago

    The Brown-Headed Cowbird long ago chose a nomadic life. Laying its eggs in the nests of other birds, it was then free to follow the herds of buffalo and cattle across the Great Plains. Today it has continued its...

  • Got Japanese Beetles?  You Need Catbirds!
    2

    Got Japanese Beetles? You Need Catbirds!

    4 years ago

    Instead of using toxic chemical pesticides and ineffective traps, why not enlist Nature's first line of defense against destructive insects. Japanese beetles are like popcorn to gray catbirds! If you have these or any...

  • Building the Ultimate Brush Pile: 4 Easy Steps to a Super Brush Pile for Birds
    8

    Building the Ultimate Brush Pile: 4 Easy Steps to a Super Brush Pile for Birds

    5 years ago

    Building a brush pile is easy and fun. You have to pile that stuff someplace, right? Why not make it bird-user-friendly while you're at it! Here are 4 easy steps to a great brush pile that will attract more birds to...

  • Amazing Starlings:  The Good, the Bad, the Bold and the Beautiful
    18

    Amazing Starlings: The Good, the Bad, the Bold and the Beautiful

    21 months ago

    Starlings have a very bad reputation, and with good reason. They are aggressive birds that have displaced our native songbirds by competing for nesting spots as well as food sources. But they also have their good...

  • Are You Losing the War Against Slugs and Snails? Ten Natural Ways to Win the Battle
    32

    Are You Losing the War Against Slugs and Snails? Ten Natural Ways to Win the Battle

    5 years ago

    Ridding your gardens of slugs and snails can be frustrating. The use of harsh, toxic chemicals does not discriminate between the beneficial insects and the bad bugs. Employ a combination of these eco-friendly...

  • 7 Natural Ways to Entice Orioles to Your Yard
    10

    7 Natural Ways to Entice Orioles to Your Yard

    4 years ago

    If you have never had the pleasure of hearing or seeing the gorgeous Northern (Baltimore) Oriole, here are 7 natural ways you can attract them to your yard and gardens. You won't be sorry, they are voracious insect...

  • Do You Suffer From Brown Thumb Syndrome?  You Can Be Cured!
    10

    Do You Suffer From Brown Thumb Syndrome? You Can Be Cured!

    5 years ago

    Brown Thumb Syndrome...it robs you of any gardening confidence and undermines your self esteem. Every time you pass by a gorgeous garden full of happy thriving flowers, you wonder what's wrong with you. Maybe your...

  • 15 Myths About Wild Birds
    54

    15 Myths About Wild Birds

    5 years ago

    Uncooked rice will make a birds stomach swell up and explode! True or False? Hummingbirds never land, they always hover. Right or Wrong? If you feed peanut butter to birds, it will stick to the roof of their mouths...

  • The Perfect Bird-Friendly Evergreen Plants
    10

    The Perfect Bird-Friendly Evergreen Plants

    13 months ago

    Add year-round beauty and interest to your landscape while providing natural protection from bad weather and predators as well as nesting site opportunities for your feathered visitors.

  • Best Feeders for Backyard Winter Birds
    8

    Best Feeders for Backyard Winter Birds

    5 years ago

    5 essentials to use for your backyard winter birds, the best place in your yard to locate them, and the best foods to attract a variety of feathered visitors.

  • Fun Questions and Answers About Wild Turkeys
    39

    Fun Questions and Answers About Wild Turkeys

    4 years ago

    Do you know why Ben Franklin wanted to name the wild turkey as our national symbol instead of the bald eagle? Do you know what a hen turkey looks like, or how many eggs she lays? Find out the answers to these...

  • Blue Jays—Clever Mimics of the Bird World
    26

    Blue Jays—Clever Mimics of the Bird World

    13 months ago

    Blue Jays are not only clever mimics, but highly intelligent birds that love day old bread. They have the reputation for being bully birds, and rightly so. But I don't think there's a prettier sight in the middle of...

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