Saturday, March 12, 2005

Consider the birds

Each day in this wooded little corner of Florida begins with birdsong. The loudest birds are the most common - cardinals, bluejays, mockingbirds, Carolina wrens, tufted titmice, and white-eyed vireos.

Songbirds are such hopeful little creatures. They are eager to greet the new day regardless of the weather, and they embrace their daily tasks with a will. We humans would do well to consider these birds, and look upon them as a daily example.

Interesting recent bird sightings:
  • 2 bald eagles standing in a pasture containing sheep and llamas. Llamas were scattered and alert, while the sheep were bunched up shielding their lambs.
  • Pair of red-shouldered hawks shrieking from the top of a live oak tree in our yard. One hawk clutched a mole or mouse in one foot.
  • Bald eagle standing on a roadside tearing at a sheet of fiberglass insulation that had liberated itself from the back of a pickup truck.
  • 2 cattle egrets perched on a reclining cow. One egret had chosen to stand on the poll, between the cow's horns. The cow was unruffled.
Robins winter in this part of Florida, and their arrival reminds those of us in the Good Ol' Sunny South that the rest of humanity to the north are bracing for a season of snow and ice. This winter the robins have been particularly numerous and can be observed in a variety of habitats ranging from coastal salt marshes , to suburban backyards, and the grassy verges along public roads. They're everywhere.

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