Thursday, November 6, 2014

A new more welcoming Paton Center for Hummingbirds

(Don't miss the awesome action shots at the end of the post!)
If you haven't been to the Paton Center for Hummingbirds for a while, you might just drive right by before you realize you've gone too far!
Before: Front Gate Parking
After: Front Gate parking, no gate!

But, with the new Welcome Sign up to greet you, hopefully more people from out of town/state/country will be more confident of where they're going on their first magical visit.
The new Welcome sign!
We took down the chain-link fence the whole way along Blue Heaven Road so that the Paton Center is more fully integrated with the surrounding landscape, and is visually a much more welcoming site.
Before: Blue Heaven Road with fence
After: Blue Heaven Road, no fence

We've also gotten up a new Javalina-proof fence to protect the inner yard and gardens around the house continuing the style of the historic house fence.
Matt Clark digs in the
javalina wire trench
Andy Bennett rakes things
back into order afterwards
Volunteer extraordinaire Chris 
Strohm attaches the fencing
The new, very visible, donation box is installed. Don't worry, donations still go to the sugar fund, just as they always have!

And we'll leave you with a pile of exciting action shots; showcasing all the work that goes into making these changes possible. If you want to help out, contact Keith Ashley or Jonathan Horst; we could sure use some help!

HULK SMASH! Rodd Lancaster provides a bit of
persuasion to a fencepost and concrete plug that
just didn't want to budge...

Dan Lehman disassembles the front gate

Our awesome neighbor, Luke Reese of The Sonoita Creek Preserve next door,
lends a hand and mows the overgrown paddock meadow area with a bush hog.
Dan Lehman cuts old welds to take down the old horse paddock behind the old shed

Thanks to the tractor we were able to borrow from  Duncan Blair (Rio Santa Cruz Beef), we were 

Rodd Lancaster ties in the new fencing to the creekside chain-
link fence

To maintain the legacy and feel of the Paton's yard, Jonathan
Horst cuts out a section of the Hummingbird Gate that was the
entrance to the back fountain to become the new front gate to
the main house. 


  1. Just curious, why did you put the bird tally board right in front of the house windows? It looks rather unsightly there, IMO. I would of put it back toward the side entrance gate, where one could check it as you walk in.

    1. Bill - there was a bunch of discussion with people in the back yard, on the fly while we were installing. The current location is temporary, and was chosen based on visitors feedback at the time to maximize the bird viewing area. Thank you for your feedback and suggestions, and we welcome feedback from anyone else. With the ongoing upgrades to the yard, lots of things are in flux.

  2. Came by the other day by chance and saw all your awesome work. It really did feel more welcoming. Thank you all!

  3. This is all good news! I hope I am able to visit it next time I am back in town and see these changes for myself!


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