Friday, May 25, 2007

Things learned about birds today

1. Yellowthroats don't always say "Witchety-witchety-witchety". Sometimes their songs are more complex, and may fool a birder like myself. But the males are striking with their black masks.

2. A goshawk is always an amazing sight. Particularly when it perches in a tree about fifty feet away from the car you have stopped in the middle of the road in amazement. Luckily we don't get much traffic.

3. Hermit thrushes only sing for a short time in the evening, but wow. When they sing!

4. Veeries and woodcock keep on into the last lingering light.

5. Wow, it's 9:30 and the western sky isn't totally dark. The light will start coming at 4:30 or earlier. Birds start singing at the first sign of light. I had to tie birds into this somehow.

6. I have a full day of gardening ahead of me tomorrow, and I will probably be serenaded by the chattering call of sedge wrens while I prepare garden beds and plant. I think I'll hold back with tomatoes and other fragile stuff, however. We had frost last night. Sigh.

7. I have never actually seen a sedge wren. I'll keep my binoculars handy in the garden, but they like to hide in the willows!

8. Oh, one more thing. I saw my first nighthawk of the year today.


Cathy said...

It 'sounds' as though you live in a little corner of heaven. I can not imagine regularly hearing a thrush - even fleetingly. I love Robert Frost's poem - "Come In" - particularly the stanza:
'The last of the light of the sun
That had died in the west
Still lived for one song more
In a thrush's breast.'

Lynne said...

Veery songs are amazing but hermit thrushes- totally magical. These days I would give my eye teeth to live "up north". I'll have to look up sedge wrens tomorrow- I've never seen of heard one.

Floridacracker said...

Nice bird notes.
Frost, wow,that is amazing.

robin andrea said...

Great list, deb. I've never seen a nighthawk or a goshawk. How lucky that you have them both there. I've been noticing both Hermit and Swainson's Thrush in our pond, but have not heard them sing yet this year. I love their songs more than any other. This is the first year that I've noticed the warblers. They're also spending a lot of time in the pond.

Yes, lots of light here too. 4:30 am and the birds are singing. Amazing.

Deb said...

Cathy- Thanks for the quotation- very appropriate.

Lynne- if you want to add one to your life list, they're here! Also some buzzy sounding bird I haven't figured out yet.

FC- "Scattered frost" predicted for tonight, which means here in our little geographical oddity valley, frost will happen.

Robin Andrea- Great to hear the birds are enjoying your pond. You must be near the same latitude as me, to have that early sunrise!