Cindy and I just returned from Ohio where we visited our daughter and son-in-law. They recently bought a small horse farm (9 acres) east of Columbus.
While the house, barn and property were basically in good shape, Cassie and Kevin have completely remodled the house, installing new fixtures, new floors and painting all the walls.
This was all before we arrived.
Our job was to change the horse farm to a bird sanctuary of sorts. The property already has a nice pond with a resident blue heron.
Surrounding the house and barn are two small pastures surrounded by mixed timber. Most of the fencing is board but several wire fences are also present.
We started by ripping out some of the board fencing for wood to make bird houses. I also pulled some of the posts for a bird feeder base and to mount a bird house down by the pond. After mounting a couple of bird houses on the fence lining their driveway Cindy and I painted the fence. At one point a top fence board had a large knot hole. I used the hole for a bird house entrance and built the house on the back side.
The day after we finished, we noticed downy woodpeckers, red-bellied woodpeckers, eastern bluebirds and nuthatches checking out the bird houses.
We scouted the thick timber above their house and barn. Blue jays and cardinals moved through the tree tops. In all Cassie counted 14 different species. Because of the barb covered vines and bushes, trails will have to be cut through. In one spot we discovered white wash from a small owl.
So owl boxes will have to be constructed also. They have a barn, so a barn owl box would also make sense.
In between these jobs, we checked out the numerous bird sanctuaries in the area. It's nice to know with all this population, large areas are still being protected.
It was tough saying goodby, and to be honest I could see living in a place like this. After all Cindy and I grew up near by.
One problem though.
No grizzlies. No wolves. No nesting great gray owls. No moose, martens or mountain lions. No walking for miles without seeing a fence. No quiet that's so strong it's deafening.