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Local Wildlife

There is an amazing abundance of animals in and around Ellicott City, scurrying around in their never ending
search for sustenance. Afew examples below of what I have been lucky enough to get a shot of in my back garden of all places. I have been feeding the local animals since I got here in 2002, so if you want to contribute then please donate.


| Black Vulcher and Turkey Vulcher | Blue Jay | Chipmunk | Cardinal | Crow | Dove | Fox | Groundhog | Hawk |
| Mallard | American Robin | Sparrow | Squirrel | Thrush | Raccoon | White Tailed Deer | Woodpecker | Wood Duck |

* * *




These guys are here year round and make a magnificent spectacle on those bright sunny days in the heart of winter. They are always stuffing their faces full of oiled sunflower seeds!


These little guys are so incredibly cute scampering across the ground with their tails up and running for their lives!
They are getting very used to me and following me around the garden.

Black Vulcher and Turkey Vulcher

Black Vulcher and Turkey Vulcher

Turkey Vulture
We never waste food but put it out in the garden which soon gets polished off. Whenever their is sold by date
chicken or leftover chicken, they spot it and come down to gorge themselves.
Blue Jay
Blue Jay

These guys are noisy and make it obvious when they are flying around, eating the sunflower seeds and corn left outside for everyone. I think they claim everything and scoff it all up.

Crow (The Boys)

Well what can I say about the boys? The five mischievous louts make such a racket when they want some feeding!
They clean up almost everything but like sausage and KFC. Yeah weird! They love the bread offered inall.



The Mourning Dove is a member of the dove family. The bird is also called the American Mourning Dove or Rain Dove. It is one of the most abundant and widespread of all North American birds. It is also the leading game bird, with up to 70 million birds shot annually in the U.S., both for sport and for meat. Its ability to sustain such pressure stems from its prolific breeding. Its plaintive woo-oo-oo-oo call gives the bird its name. The wings can make an unusual whistling sound upon take-off and landing, and the bird is a strong flier, capable of speeds up to 55 mph.

Fox (Brokenfoot)

Brokenfoot has been with us since I was aware in the winter of 2008. She turned up limping very badly and not being able to put an pressure on her hind leg. She started to come in with her man and snap afew leftovers until I actually put aside my own food for her, including some lovely steaks and chicken etc, much to my wife's displeasure.


The groundhog also known as the land beaver or whistlepig, is a rodent of the family, belonging to the group of large ground squirrels known as marmots. Other marmots, such as the yellow-bellied and hoary marmots, live in rocky and mountainous areas, but the woodchuck is a lowland creature. It is widely distributed in North America and common in the northeastern and central United States.




These birds surprise and capture all their prey from cover or while flying quickly through dense vegetation. The great majority of this hawk's prey is small birds, especially various songbirds such as sparrows, wood-warblers and American Robins.



The Mallard is probably the best-known and most recognizable of all ducks, which breeds throughout the sub-tropical areas of North America. It is migratory in the northern parts of its breeding range, and winters farther south.

American Robin
American Robin

The American Robins are common sights on lawns across North America, where you often see them grabbing earthworms out of the ground. Robins are popular birds for their warm red/orange breast, cheery song, and early appearance at the end of winter. Though they’re familiar town and city birds, American Robins are at home in wilder areas, too, including mountain forests and Alaskan wilderness.

White Tailed Deer
(Shorty, Whitefoot, Broken Tail, The Old Girl, Princess, Shorty's Kids, The Others)
White Tailed Deer

I feed these guys from 2-4 50lb bags of corn a week, twice a day. Once in the morning and one in the evening with afew scattered feeds throughout the day. These guys let me get quite close when I am feeding them and The Old Girl and whitefoot especially love the pieces of bread they get.

Raccoon (Cheeky)

The raccoon is a medium-sized mammal native to North America. Two of the most distinctive features of the raccoon are its extremely sensitive front paws and facial mask, which are also themes in the mythology of several Native American tribes. Studies have shown that raccoons are able to remember the solution to tasks up to three years later. Raccoons are omnivorous and usually nocturnal, and their diet consists of about 40% invertebrates, 33% plant foods and 27% vertebrates.


Thrushes are plump, small to medium-sized birds, inhabiting wooded areas. Most species are gray or brown in color, often with speckled underparts. Most species eat worms, snails, and fruit and many species are permanently resident in warm climes, while other migrate to higher latitudes during summer, often over considerable distances. Thrushes build cup-shaped nests, sometimes lining them with mud. They lay two to five speckled eggs, sometimes laying two or more clutches per year. Both parents help in raising the young.


This little guy has been with us since the spring 2009, which frightens me because of brokenfoot who would
gobble her up given half the chance. She hangs around the garden chomping on this and that. Loves corn.


Generally, sparrows tend to be small, plump brown-grey birds with short tails and stubby, powerful beaks. The differences between sparrow species can be subtle. They are primarily seed-eaters, though they also consume small insects.


Squirrels are generally clever and persistent animals. In residential neighborhoods, they are notorious for eating out of bird feeders, digging in planting pots and flower beds to pull out bulbs which they chew on or to either bury or recover seeds and nuts and for inhabiting sheltered areas including attics and basements. Squirrels use their keen sense of smell to locate buried nuts and can dig extensive holes in the process. Birds, especially crows, will watch a squirrel bury a nut and will dig it up as soon as the squirrel leaves. Although expert climbers, squirrels also thrive in urban environments.


The diet of woodpeckers consists mainly of insects and their grubs, and other arthropods, along with fruit, nuts and sap, and is noted for its ability to acquire wood-boring grubs using their bills for hammering. The insect prey most commonly taken are insects found inside rotten wood and in crevices in bark on trees. These include beetles and their grubs, ants, termites, spiders, caterpillars. These may be obtained either by gleaning or more famously by excavating wood. Having hammered a hole into the wood the prey is excavated by a long barbed tongue. The ability to excavate allows woodpeckers to obtain tree sap, an important source of food for some species.

Wood Duck
Wood Duck

The Wood Duck or Carolina Duck is a medium-sized duck. A typical adult is about 19 inches in length with an average wingspan of 29 inches. This is about three-quarters of the length of an adult Mallard. The adult male has distinctive multi-colored iridescent plumage and red eyes. The female, less colorful, has a white eye-ring and a whitish throat. Both adults have crested heads. When swimming, wood ducks bob their head back and forth in a jerking motion, which makes them easy to spot. Their breeding habitat is wooded swamps, shallow lakes, marshes or ponds. They usually nest in cavities in trees close to water, although they will take advantage of nesting boxes in wetland locations if available.

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