Saturday, April 12, 2008

My Inner Birder

I have always been interested in birds, but have never considered myself a "birder". I have never been on an excursion exclusively to observe birds. But I have enjoyed reading the birders' blog carnival, I and the Bird, and visiting the guys at 10,000 Birds and DC Birding Blog.

When I worked out of my home for several years I started strewing bird seed on the driveway outside my window so I could watch the birds as I worked at my computer. Soon our cat showed her appreciation of my efforts in ways I had not anticipated. I had to find ways to attract birds without depleting their populations. So I built a shelf under the window right at my left shoulder as I sat at the computer.

Soon titmice, chickadees, cardinals, sparrows, finches, doves, and even woodpeckers were visiting so close that, were the window open, I could reach out and touch them. So I opened the window, put on a glove, poured a little birdseed in my hand, and waited. Soon the little rascals were eating out of my gloved hand. This practice probably contributed to a couple of missed deadlines. I won't blame the failure of my little business on the birds, though.

Yesterday I took to the woods along our school nature trail to see if the Catesby's Trillium I had seen in bud on Thursday had bloomed yet. It had. None of my photos turned out well, however.

Along the way I found a number of other sights worth recording with my digital camera. A glorious wildflower with beautiful ferny leaves and a stalk with a showy whorl of little orchid-like blooms of maroon and white and yellow -- maybe Richard will see this and identify it for me. I haven't found it in the books I have at home. [Later note: This gorgeous flower is called Wood Betony or Lousewort, of all things! Pedicularis canadensis. And it was right there on our Flora of Armuchee Elementary database - I had just overlooked it.]

Dwarf-crested irises.

A million fiddleheads of ferns.

Darners posing on rocks.

A caterpillar trespassing on a fireant mound.

But most exciting, I suppose, a mother goose incubating her eggs on a nest slap-dab in the middle of the little pond just outside our school woods on the Berry College land.

Julie, of Pines Above Snow, tagged me with a meme, My Inner Birder. Thanks, Julie. She explains the meme on this post. So here is my Inner Birder photo and a six-word memoir of my inner birder.

Soft nest. Quiet rest. Resolute quest.

(Click on the picture to see Mama Goose up close)

I will not tag any particular blogger but invite any reader, who feels so inspired, to find his/her inner birder. Consider yourself tagged and go for it.

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