A Quirky Collection

Some people collect post cards from places they have visited; some people collect old coins; and my husband collects Looney Tune glasses that Pepsi put out in the 70’s.  As for me, I collect dead branches!

Now, I recognize that lifeless limbs are not often seen as collector’s items, but they really do make perfect perches for bird pictures.  I just spread a little tempting treat on the back side of the branch (my birds like Bark Butter) and then wait to see who shows up.

The other day, this lovely female Red-bellied Woodpecker swooped in and was in no hurry to leave.  You can tell this is a female because her red head patch doesn’t extend all the way to her beak like the male’s does.


She took her time investigating all the nooks and crannies on the top side…


…and then swung underneath and found the Bark Butter that I had jammed into the end of the branch.  I love the way she uses her tail to brace herself.

A lot of times, this sweet gal will grab a quick bite and then scurry off, but this time she seemed determined to get every last drop.  It’s so cool how she uses her tongue to probe into the crevices.

If you’re wondering why she is called a Red-bellied and not a Red-headed Woodpecker it’s because the latter name was claimed by this fellow below.  Hard to argue about him deserving the title!


Still, if you look at her belly, you can see a tinge of rusty tones.  I think she has such a gentle beauty about her!


Oh, and in case your curious, I also collect coffee mugs as well as pens and paper products that somehow hop into my cart whenever I’m at Office Max.  I’m pretty sure the pens and paper supplies are more of an addiction than a collection!

Anyway, if you’re looking for a new hobby, I strongly suggest the acquisition of dead branches: it’s free, it’s fun, and it will leave your friends wondering if you’ve finally lost it!





16 thoughts on “A Quirky Collection

    1. My family thinks I’m crazy (although I secretly think they like helping me hunt for branches!), but they really do help the pictures turn out prettier. 🙂

  1. If you like dead branches so much Kathy, you should see some of the dead leadwood trees that dot some of our wild places. Leadwood is a very hard wood, and it can take centuries for the stumps to weather away. And they’re real masterpieces; like old hags reaching to heaven!

        1. These really are beautiful in their own way. I love these pictures…and I would love one of these in my backyard! Thank you so much for sharing!

  2. Since we live in a new allotment this is a great idea, create a bird tree, since no other grown trees or bushes have developed yet. Love these shots

  3. Perfect perches. And they still seem to have some life in them unless the woodpeckers are mistaken. Wonderful shots!

  4. Outstanding collection of photos, gorgeous! And a great post, you had me laughing. I collect shaped rocks, some as large as a grapefruit (my size limit, lol). Your branch-collecting for perch set-up is a fantastic idea for birding ops! 🙂

    1. I’ve grabbed my fair share of rocks too! I remember one from Lake Erie that was smooth and black and shaped like a jelly bean that was a favorite!

  5. I used to collect dead branches, dried moss, pine cones, rocks, shells… Well, I still do actually. 😳 Lol! Glad to hear I’m not alone! 😍❤️🐤

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