Here I go with the word “honorable” again. Maggie and I “love” our native songbirds. During the Fall and Winter months especially, we make sure that all our feathered friends are offered food. When our pond freezes over we make sure thawed water is available also.
Watching all the different species of birds lighting on our back porch feeders is remarkable. Just like making your own bread, brewing your own beer, steeping your own tinctures, cutting your own firewood, showing a little compassion for birds in the Winter is “honorable.”
Harkening back to my childhood, when I waited impatiently for my new cereal box toy to arrive in the mail, I have waited day after day after day for my Cornell Lab of Ornithology “Project FeederWatch” bird counting kit. http://www.birds.cornell.edu/pfw/ Today, like a kid ripping open Christmas presents, I received my bird count kit and quickly discarded the unnecessary mailing envelope. Okay, maybe it does not take a lot to excite me, but today was extra special for me! My new “toy” arrived. I set up my profile, hung my calendar, and submitted my first count on-line…on time. Yes, I am counting birds, so that the scientists can sort through the data and help any suffering species with their wealth of knowledge and science, to hopefully survive and flourish in the years to come. By doing this, my grandson Calib may actually get to see the birds I’ve seen and hear their melodic choruses, as I have. Yes, I still perform the “manly” tasks of huntin’, fishin’, changin’ my own water pump out on the car, and occasionally playin’ poker on Monday nights with the “boys.” But, I like to watch birds. Trust me, I am no “sissy.” What you can call me is a “Renaissance” man. They replaced water pumps and watched birds… and recited poetry…and played music…
Visit the Boston Mountains in the Winter and you will find that “no home” is without a bird feeder. Trust me, mountain people are attached to nature “at the hip!”
- Project FeederWatch (naturalhistorywanderings.com)
- Binoculars and Beyond: Nine Tips for Beginning Bird Watchers (birds.cornell.edu)