Animals Around the House

Since Eldorado Windy Farm is on land that was once ranchland and is relatively close to mountains, foothills and prairie, there are many animals that either live here year round or pass through during the different seasons. Some of these animals are considered pests because their lifestyle and ours do not match and others are beneficial or just interesting to have around. To attract birds we keep a box feeder outside the kitchen window and put up several hummingbird feeders during the summer.




The mammals that are full-time residents are numerous. They include deer mice, pocket gophers, cottontail rabbits, coyotes, pack rats, black tailed weasels, bobcats and a juvenile black bear.

The seasonal mammals include a pronghorn antelope, skunks, small spotted squirrel, rock squirrels and a bear just wandering through the neighborhood.


Gopher Snake

The reptiles are of course seasonal since they must hibernate during the colder months of the year. They include the western fence lizard, whip tail lizard, bull snake, gopher snake, coachwhip, rattlers and our pet tortoise "Tootsie". Tootsie has lived in our flower garden for the past 6 or 7 years. One year we even found her on eggs. They weren't hers though, they were quail eggs! For some reason quail lay eggs under our hardy winter jasmine plant every year, but they are always abandoned. She is an Eastern Box Tortoise that only comes out of the ground where she hibernates for a few months during the summer monsoon. Unlike other tortoises that we have had she will eat thawed frozen shrimp and tomatoes that have kept her alive all these years. We had two others (males - Toby & Toto) that would only eat grubs and worms and they never made it through winter hibernation.



The birds that either live here full-time or pass through seasonally are numerous. The full-time residents are the canyon tohees, curve-billed thrashers, ravens, Cooper's hawks, house finches, scaled quail (who have multitudes of babies every year.)

Winter brings junkos and white-crowned sparrows who stay around the feeder all season, scrub jays, and flickers.

In the spring additional birds join those already here. The western bluebirds, robins and ringed turtledoves and mourning doves all nest in the area.

The summer brings an occasional roadrunner and various species of hummingbirds who stop to feed on their long migration south. The black chinned are the first to arrive followed by broad-tail and finally the bully rufus who protects all of the feeders and keeps all of the others at bay.

Other birds that occasionally visit are the:

warbler mountain chickadee plain titmouse white breasted nuthatch
oriole evening grosbeak house sparrow red-winged blackbird
lesser goldfinch western meadowlark horned lark downey woodpecker
cowbird crow phoebe flycatcher rufous-sided towhee