Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Birds put on a show for kitty Popoki in her catio

Popoki the cat watches the birds

Popoki the cat has been rooted to this spot from the moment I opened the doors to the catio and let her come out to play. She's tucked in a little back corner, behind my thriving lemon plant, so she can't be bothered by dogs or pesky humans. She likes the seclusion.

But she also likes the view. Even though Popoki has been delcawed in front (grrr) and has no chance of capturing or killing a bird, her hunting instinct remains intact. She takes great joy in watching and listening to birds. And she is a very stealthy hunter that creeps up on birds outside the screens without making a sound.

Since she loves birds so much, I installed a little bird feeder in the upper corner of her favorite napping spot.

Bird feeder outside of the catio

The birds can snack on the seeds I put inside of the feeder, and the plastic thing keeps the squirrels from stealing those seeds. All in all, this is an excellent system. And it keeps Popoki entertained for hours.

But last week, something really special happened. And that event has kicked Popoki's bird watching skills to a whole new level.

Early in the morning, I noticed that there was a cloud of blue flies swarming around the driveway, just outside of the catio. I have never seen so many bugs in one place before, and I wondered how long they'd stick around.

They didn't stay long, as it turns out, because a group of birds came to visit. I shot this video while standing in the catio.

These birds are moving fast, and they're making some very acrobatic swoops in order to catch those bugs. I was afraid they'd hit a window or the catio, but they never came close enough to make contact.

In about an hour, they'd cleaned up all of these bugs, and then they were gone.

I have no idea what kind of birds these are (I'm trying to find out!), and I have no idea if they'll come back. But I do know Popoki would like to see them come back. This was a real treat for her, and she was flattened and fascinated throughout the entire attack. She keeps watching for their return. So am I!

Anyone know what kind of birds these might be? Drop me a line and let me know, won't you?


  1. Popoki must have been really enjoying the bird display. They were moving too quickly to see them clearly, but the distinct way they have of diving back and forth after insects is very much like the swifts we get in the UK. Do you get swifts in the US? If so I would think there is a good chance that is what they are.

    1. We have a gigantic group of Vaux swifts up the freeway in Portland, and I think I'm on the migration path. You might be right!

  2. I think they look like swallows, but it is hard to tell for sure. That is a nice spot for Popoki.

    1. That is what I thought at first, but they appear to have shorter blunt tails rather than forked.

  3. I could use some of those birds around here! Our yard is so buggy. Yuck. And some bats while we're at it to eat the mosquitoes.

  4. That's great that Popoki is enjoying the cation so much!

  5. How fun for Popoki! :)

    I was going to guess swallows, too.

  6. They have to be either swifts or swallows. Couldn't see the color on them. Our violet green tree swallows have all moved on, and the swifts are moving through now, so I think I would lean toward swifts. Check the Cornell Ornithology website or their cool bird app "Merlin".

  7. I need to do this for Bear. He's usually scared outside - but maybe the set up would let him feel safe and still be able to enjoy the outdoors, like he can through a window.