There are lots of ducks here on our Alpine ponds. Ring-necked, Mexican Ducks, and the merganser and shoveler are still here. I think the reason we have so many right now is because I managed to prevent Hugh from mowing close around the ponds. The tall grasses help the ducks feel insulated from the street noise and traffic.
The Allen's Hummingbird is still around too. I meant to photograph it today, but that didn't happen. No sunshine, and my photos don't turn out as good without sun.
I've been working on scanning old negatives into digital photos. Here's one of me that dates to sometime in the early 1980s, when I was in my early 40s. Seems like an eternity ago. I finished the house in 1979. This photo was taken in the courtyard after that, but before the vegetation got big, which is how I date it.
In comparison, here is how the courtyard looked in the summer of 2007. Unlike me, it looks better with age.
Hopefully, it'll look that good again someday. It's had a rough year. That planter bench (in both photos) was made out of petrified wood by my brother. I remember how hard I worked to get grass to grow inside the courtyard. That was before I worked even harder to get rid of it. I pluck out any little sprig that comes up. I just want native trees, flowers, and bushes now. In other words, habitat for birds.