Ladder and Tractor Work on St. Patrick’s Day

owl nest box bottomToday finally our schedules, weather and health came together that I could do some ladder work and Tom could do some tractor work.

On the ladder I wanted to clean out our barn owl nest box.  I could see there was a large bee’s nest in there and wanted to get it out before the bees became active and before hopefully a barn owl would make a nest in there this spring.  When I took the nest box apart, I found the above in the bottom.  There is straw and twigs in it.  Tom thought he saw starlings bringing nesting materials into the box, but this does not look like a starling’s nest to me. So I wonder if an own started making a nest before the hornets drove her out.  Below is the photo of the hornets’ nest I found.

owl nest box hornet nestTom said it looks like a spent hornets’ nest.  It is quite a feat of architecture.  Here it is out of the nest box.

hornet nestI put the nest box back together, and hopefully a barn owl will move in now.  I then took the ladder into the old pheasant pen to take the netting down that had partially fallen down in the snow storm last month.  The netting went over the roof of the “pheasant shed”.  I removed the netting revealing significant moss growth there.  It is an Irish green color.

irish green mossAfter I removed the moss and the rest of the netting, I started stringing yarn above the pen to discourage eagles from swooping in and taking our ducks and pheasants.  I used white, blue, and pink spare yarn I had so it is colorful.

yarnMeanwhile Tom used our new tractor to clear about 6 inches of mud out of the alley way in front of the sheep’s side of the barn.  Here he is on the tractor with some of the mud he scooped up.

Tom tractor mudAnd here are the sheep checking out their cleaned up alley way for the first time.

sheep in unmuddy alleywayI did all of this while wearing green and orange.  I wear green because it is St. Patrick’s Day.  I wear orange because my Scotch-Irish grandmother asked me to on St. Patrick’s Day.  And I wear both together in hope of a lasting peace in Ireland.  When we visited Belfast a few years ago, it seemed like a city on the edge of violent confrontation.  But hopefully they will continue to co-exist peacefully there.  Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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