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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Off Topic Post - Meet the Critters in Snow White's Garden

Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that we would end up in the Tropics in South America.  I can't say exactly where we are for personal reasons, but I'd like to show you some of the critters that visit Snow White's Cottage (name in keeping with the books our son, Jonathan, wrote about our lives) on the mountain and hidden in a tropical rain forest.  Hence the cute name - Jungle Jen's Journal.  Ian did that and he also designed my blog.  He also does any websites of ours as well.  He is a computer guy so those things are easy for him.

Here is Mr. Sloth hanging around - this tree is about 7 stories above the ground and the termites have been making many of the branches rotten through and through.  I don't know how he has not fallen!  He seems to know what he is doing.  He has stuck around for about 6 weeks now coming down after eating to hide in the thick Ficcus trees. It takes several days for them to digest their food.  Needless to say our tree is looking quite sparse at the moment and a bit sorry for itself as that sloth is eating all the leaves. He even sits up there in torrential rain and lightning storms.  I watched him climb the tree the other day.  Fascinating.  He is actually very agile in a tree but get him on the ground and you cannot believe how sloooow he is.  Unreal.  Hence his name - sloth.




Next are a couple of photos of the birds that come visiting to eat bananas from the hanging baskets below the eaves.  We've since stained the wood - looks very pretty, but they mess on the mango-colored wall (yep, my house is mango with a red roof) and periodically we have to clean the wall with bleach.  Those are Bay Headed Tanagers and the red one is the male Summer Tanager (his mate is completely yellow and also pretty).  We get a good variety of colorful birds.  Sometimes the squirrel or the olingo (night animal) gets up on the roof and jumps into the basket to have a banana feast.  If they see Smiley, our dog, they jump to the bush below and scamper away.


The monkey and the red squirrel don't seem to mind each other too much.  That stick you see in the photo has two prongs at the top.  I put the banana between the prongs and lift the stick up and plop the banana into the basket.  This way I don't have to take the basket down each time.  This was Ian's neat invention.  I do similar things with the hummingbird feeders.


This little Titi monkey (Jeoffroy Tamarin) is enjoying his banana very much.  Lately two of them come to visit me almost daily but often a whole troop will come at once.  They are the cutest things and become quite tame.  I don't go too close though as they are still wild.  I remember a little scrappy one used to come visit me.  He was very tiny and had a scrappy, little tail.  He was sooo cute.  He would call me from the driveway each day and then he would make that monkey sound and eat  - it sounded like he would cry and eat and cry and eat.  Poor little thing stopped coming after a while and I fear the worst.  This Titi monkey in the photo is a robust, healthy specimen.  He doesn't mean to be sticking his tongue out at you. (wink)





20 comments:

buttoni said...

Oh, my,, to have your morning coffee with such beautiful creatures in your yard to enjoy. Lovely birds.

Jennifer said...

Peggy, that is exactly what we do - Ian has his coffee and I have my cup of tea. Such pleasure watching the birds. We buy a big crate of bananas every week for $6 or so and it is so worth it to watch the birds and have the monkeys visit (not so much the naughty squirrels who also like hibiscus flowers much to my chagrin). We also get a very funny, big old prehistoric-looking lizard called a Jesus lizard who loves bananas. They walk so fast (or run!) that they can "walk" on water up to 15 feet at a stretch before they sink and need to swim.

Ann said...

That's incredible....I bet they're better than TV! I didn't realize you lived in the tropics!

Jennifer said...

LOL - you mean the lizards? Yeah.

lgpars said...

How wonderful, Jen, to see all these gorgeous critters every day. I envy you as I love to sit and watch God's creations. Looks a little like maybe the Garden of Eden might have looked like, hun? Thanks for sharing.

Dawnie @ The Coach's Wife's Kitchen said...

Oh my goodness I am so jealous. I would love to live somewhere like that. Instead I married a hockey player and moved to Sweden not too far from the Artic Circle. So cool.

Jennifer said...

It is hard to believe I am here, Linda, in such a place. I never knew anything like this before.

Jennifer said...

Dawnie, you never know. As I said, this was the last place I could have dreamed we would end up in. We spent almost 30 years in Canada so I can relate. I am sure Sweden must be an incredible, enriching experience for you. Canada was for me. I grew up in the southernmost tip of Africa and left when I was 21. We've lived in 3 countries. Sure has not been dull.

Vanessa Romero said...

I'm coming for a visit!

Jennifer said...

Haha You can definitely come visit.

Apfelkuchen said...

VERY pretty birds and other critters are cute as can be, I bet they bite though, lol.

Jennifer said...

LOL I don't know. I would not try to pick one up and test the theory. ;) They are just fun to watch and feed.

Ginny said...

How fun to have those cute critters and the beauty you have to view!!! I have hardly been out of my own state very much, so it's so nice to see the pictures. Wish I could come visit! :)

Jennifer said...

Hi Ginny - yes, it would nice for you to visit. I am such a homebody too and Ian has dragged me all over the world it seems.

Nancy said...

Wow,not bad to view this beautiful scenery every day. Thanks for sharing these pictures! Wish I could visit right about now.

Jennifer said...

Smile. Nancy, you make me appreciate it even more. Sometimes one needs to see things through another's eyes.

Eftychia said...

Those photos are so beautiful! It looks like heaven on earth...

Jennifer said...

Eftychia - your comment gave me goosebumps - what a nice thing to say and a beautiful way to look at nature. I will never forget your comment. :)

I have this feeling heaven will be even more beautiful for sure. For one, heaven would not have the pot holey roads like the one leading up to my house - the roads will be paved in gold. ;)

Amy said...

It is awesome that you get to see such interesting wildlife all the time! You are lucky :)!

Jennifer said...

Yep, I feel blessed. I like the quiet life and it could not get quieter here; very private. I am no longer a city girl. I like this.