Every morning I feed the birds and animals as soon as I get up (note to self: it really is way too cold now to go outside in sleepwear). The bird seed, which apparently also works just fine for rabbits, squirrels and chipmunks, is kept inside in a large plastic bucket with a lid. I put 4 cups of seed on the lid and take it out into the courtyard and spread it on the bricks near the gate. I call the birds and rap on the lid to let them know breakfast is served. Before I can get back inside, birds fly in from wherever they were hiding and attack with vigor. There is one bunny who shows up immediately with the birds. I think he must sit and wait just out of sight around the corner of the gate. When the big jays swoop in the little birds scatter, but only for a moment. Then they are all back eating as before. The ring-necked turtle doves and the mourning doves are still shy but also hungry. They pace back and forth in the entrance, waiting for all of the commotion to ease up before they timidly attempt to get food. The squirrel shows up and begins his methodical sweeping of all seeds in his path, filling his cheeks in his very intent and determined way. When he leaves, they are so full! In a few minutes, he is back for more, taking way more than his share. As it gets colder, they seem to eat more. Of course, every morning now their water receptacles are frozen over but a quick shot of hot water and they are able to drink.