HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — You just never know who is going to drop in at the backyard feeder. It may be a pair of Red-crowned Parrots, or it could be a platform full of them jostling for position.

The red-crowns are usually pretty tolerant of one another and readily make room for their buddies at the peanut party. However, when an aggressive squirrel leaps aboard, the parrots scatter.

So, while the squirrel selects just the right peanut to abscond with, the Red-crowns hang around waiting to dive back when that pesky squirrel departs.

Before the parrots can reclaim peanut paradise, the resident family of four chachalacas takes over. Now, the chachalacas just can’t seem to master the proper technique for peanut piercing, but when they finally depart the Red-crowns return, expertly clenching and crunching their nutty treats.

The Red-crowns come and go throughout the afternoon, and while this pair leisurely cracks the shells, a rare Red-lored Parrot joins them. The Red-lored with its bright yellow check is equally adroit at handling the peanuts.

Next up, a handsome Yellow-headed Parrot drops in. He’s a regular at the feeder and has been coming for years. Despite a platform full of peanuts, the Yellow-head prefers his regular diet of sunflower seeds.

When that bossy squirrel returns, the Yellow-head is momentarily startled but holds his perch. This beautiful bird has been a backyard visitor for many years, and no matter how many times it visits, it is always a thrill when he appears.

You just never know exactly who will come and when, and maybe that is why these feathered visitors are so appreciated. Just like all wild birds, they set their own schedule and fly in and out whenever they choose and that is the way it should be.