[birding] RE: Sparrow feeding strategies?

Jon oregon5949 at gmail.com
Sun Dec 1 12:44:34 PST 2013

Hi Frank.

I want to discourage feeding by the public on the refuges.  I made a
petty good argument and stand by it.

Your reply noted refuge staff has a "preference" that the public not
feed wildlife.

I don't think we need a rule, a law, or a closure to understand what
is being said.  Staff does not approve and is being diplomatic about
it.  We are privileged to use the reserves.  I think we have to
respect that by honoring their wishes.


On 11/30/13, kolwicz at minetfiber.com <kolwicz at minetfiber.com> wrote:
> Hi, Jon, since you posted your reply to the list, I'm replying there, too.
> There is no policy against it, per Molly Monroe, only the "preference"
> of staff.
> Nor is there law, so I feel free to do as I please unless or until I
> hear a really good argument against it - "directly affects the
> interactive experience of other birders" is not convincing: plenty of
> birders who have seen birds at my feeding sites were pleased to do so.
> Nor is a claim of cheating (cheating whom of what?) and plenty of other
> birders do it, especially for rarities for their lists (which I would
> agree is "cheating" of some sort - the listers are competitive). What
> behavior is more natural than feeding and asserting a pecking-order? Is
> it less natural than seeing birds duck for cover and not be seen again?
> Your esthetic of birding is your business, but it is only an esthetic,
> not a rule. My esthetic is displayed in my photos.
> Frank
> On 11/30/2013 9:39 AM, Jon wrote:
>> I for one am not an advocate of feeding birds on the Refuges.
>> Seed on roads, fences, and in pullout areas directly affects the
>> interactive experience of other birders.  Many are interested in
>> natural behavior.  Especially, on a wildlife refuge.
>> Feeding on a refuge is not necessary.  It is not fair chase.  It can
>> negatively affect the experience of other birders.  There may be a
>> National Wildlife Refuge policy against it.
>> Jon Hazen
>> NE Salem
>> On 11/29/13, kolwicz at minetfiber.com <kolwicz at minetfiber.com> wrote:
>>> I've been putting down seeds for Sparrows for a couple of years,
>>> inspired by reports of seed "slicks" on OBOL and here, but I'm wondering
>>> if there's a particularly effective strategy for doing it. I go out
>>> almost every day and leave a quantity of seed (sterilized, of course)
>>> that will be likely to be cleaned-up by the next day so as not to
>>> provide a lot of food for rodentsovernight. Others, I've noted, put down
>>> lots of seeds and just leave it there for weeks, presumably monitoring
>>> it at times and refreshing it occasionally.
>>> Does anyone have experience with a strategy that attracts a wide variety
>>> of species? I've had a total of 9 species atone of my siteswith 7
>>> species feeding together, maximum, but mostly have 4 or 5 of the
>>> commonest ones out there. The species I've seen and photographed are:
>>> Golden-crowned Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Lincoln's
>>> Sparrow, SavannaSparrow, Fox Sparrow, Towhee, Dark-eyed Junco,
>>> White-throated Sparrowand one possible Hybrid of G-c and W-t (it had
>>> head decorations of a G-c with a bright white throat patch).
>>> I've eventually started using the cheapest songbird seeds from BiMart as
>>> I've noticed that a lot of the non-yard sparrows like the small round
>>> seeds: millet and milo, I guess. For some reason my yard birds don't
>>> like them so much and leave a lot of small white specks all over the
>>> garden mulch.
>>> Frank
>>> in Monmouth
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