Today is Saturday, August 19, 2017

New Sheriff in Town

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Liz Franklin

By the time you get to read this, The Wilson County Fair will be just two days away. I have already mentioned our, The Wilson Post, will be set up in the large white tent right next to the pageant building. Come by and let me put your picture in our newspaper on our special page, "Seen at the Fair". Also a quick reminder to our Senior Citizens, a special picnic will be held on Monday, August 18th at 5 and also 6pm in the Fiddlers Grove area of the Ward Ag Center. Dinner tickets are free, but should be picked up in advance at several locations, see page 86 in this years fair tab for locations.

Anthony Gray and myself had a special invitation this past Saturday morning to start our day having coffee at our good friends, Liz and Willis Franklin. An early start pretty much guaranteed birds to be active all around Liz's bird feeding station. Several different species of birds huddled together at the feeders plus quite a few ground feeders making a go at some of the stale bread tossed out by Willis. I am not sure what brand of coffee was being served, but in my own mind it was "good to the last drop", or even "mountain grown".

Several small birds fought back and forth to claim the seed for themselves until the sheriff arrived to scatter them to the four winds. The sheriff in the Franklin yard takes nothing off of any other bird and has been given that name by Willis. A Northern Mockingbird has taken up residence in the holly bushes on the west side of their home, where it will guard the berry bushes as it's own property. I was talking to Liz the other day and explained that I used a peanut feeder to feed raisins to my very own Mockingbird. She has since placed one out and stocked up on the tasty currants to help keep her Mocker happy.

If I had to choose between all of the birds there, it would have to be the six plus Ruby-throated Hummingbirds that were so entertaining the whole time that we were there. Another cup of coffee please. Some would sit perched on a favorite tree limb, waiting in anticipation of another intruder trying to get a drink, then zip like a small rocket to chase the interloper away as one of the small ones stole in at a fast speed to get a drink while the owner was busy. This went on the whole time that we were there. If some of you don't have Hummers yet, most likely they are here at my house or over to the Franklin abode.

Other species of birds seen or heard there was a Baltimore Oriole, Field Sparrow, Gold Finch, House Finch, Song Sparrow, and House Sparrows. Thank goodness, they didn't have starlings hanging around. There is a Bluebird house hung out by the old dinner bell, but the Sparrows make it nire impossible to raise there. House Sparrows have been known to kill entire families of Bluebirds.

Teresa Botts came looking for Liz and I last Friday, telling us that we needed to follow her right then and there for a short bird walk. Curious of what was going on, we headed out the front door of the Lebanon Senior Citizens Center to one of the many Holly bushes planted there in the front yard. Joe Carter just happened to spot the nest and I helped Teresa to take a photo, using her phone. I was glad that both parents were away while we did the camera thing as Mockingbirds can sometimes be a little on the nasty side when their babies are involved. Just ask the across the street neighbor's cat.

I received an e-mail from Elaine Hunt asking about the lack of Hummingbirds so far this year. She even mentioned that she has not had many butterflies at her flower garden also. This has been a very wet spring and blooming flowers would be the Hummers first choice when it comes to nectar. We have been in a dry spell lately and that has brought out more Hummers lately, looking to make use of the feeders. Don't let the sugar water get old enough to turn into alcohol, as we don't need flying darts zipping around inebriated. One could lose an eye.

I would love to hear from you as to what's lurking about in your neighborhood and at your feeders. You can write me at 606 Fairview Ave., Lebanon, TN, 37087, or you can e-mail me at,

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Our Feathered Friends
Anthony Gray, Liz Franklin, Ray Pope, Willis Franklin
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