Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Birds in Iowa - I meant to do that

Nope, the picture isn't askew. This is just how the white-breasted nuthatch likes to hang. That's why they are universally called 'upside-down birds'. (Get it?) They eat insects, seeds and nuts. Nuthatches wedge seeds in trees and whack the seeds with their beaks until the seeds crack open. Then they eat the tender delicious seed guts. Yet another fascinating fact: after finishing their nests, nuthatches crush bugs and smear the juice all over the entrance to the nest. The theory is that this makes the nest unattractive to predators. Works for me.
Source: Iowa Bird Watching
Photo courtesy Gerry Rowland

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