All of the activity in my yard

Over the last couple of weeks I have noticed a lot of activity in my yard. When I look out my kitchen window I wonder, how does it  work, this instinct that the animals and the birds all seem to have at the same time of year. I see black squirrels and grey squirrels busy carrying all those nuts. I don't know how they hang onto them, some of the chestnuts are bigger than their heads.  Then there are the birds, I have a huge pack of sparrows that all seem to be jumping around my yard and the squirrels try to sneak up on the birds (I'm not sure why and what they plan on doing with them). The golden finches are busy getting fat, the other day there was 5 all at once on my little feeder, some bright yellow and black, some a muted yellow and black. They seemed to be having quite the conversation. It would be fun to understand what they are saying when they are chattering away. I'm sure they might sound just like a group of children playing in the  yard. 
We can never forget the skunks, they seem to be out in a great abundance as well. I don't see them but I sure can smell them. The closer they are the more acrid the smell. I'm sure those with dogs have all had that same experience. How do the skunks stand still long enough to wait until the poor animal gets so close they almost always get it in the side of the head.

Do we have those same instincts? Do we start nesting for winter? I have my wood pile in order, should I start burying some nuts just in case the squirrels forget where they put theirs. I've been thinking about what to put out for the birds over the winter, does anyone know? I don't want to have hundreds of birds but a few would be nice. What kind of birds stay for the winter?

It can be so entertaining watching nature at work. Take some time to enjoy it.

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