The flowers have already appeared in the land;
The time has arrived for pruning the vines,
And the voice of the turtledove has been heard in our land.
— Song of Solomon 2:12
Is it any wonder that a woman who loves trees so much should eventually turn her attention to the birds living and dancing and nesting among those trees?
The last few weeks have brought early signs of spring and a stunning array of birds to the river, including what I believe is a Golden Eagle. I’ve spent countless hours out along the river banks taking photographs and trying to see the eagle again.
The one time I saw the eagle up close, I had no camera or phone with me. Probably Murphy’s Law in action. When I have brought my camera with me, the eagle is either in hiding or perched across the river, too far for a good, clear photograph.
I’m no birding expert, but I have started learning the names and characteristics of an increasing number of birds. I thought you might like to come along on a virtual field trip with me to see a few of my favorites.
I wonder if some birds are vain? If they know they’re beautiful or graceful or elegant? Perhaps all birds consider themselves so?
I’ve sent several pictures to my dad to see, and he’s convinced the White-Tailed Kite is posing for this picture above. He remarked to me that if you do an image search for White-Tailed Kites, you’ll see many photos that look as if the bird is striking its most beautiful poses for the camera.
This hawk flew right in front of me and perched in a nearby tree. It watched while I took photos, patiently waiting for me to go away. I’m assuming it’s a Red-tailed hawk, but those of you who are more expert than I may know better.
The Great Backyard Bird Count was this past weekend, and experts were excited about it being the first count in an El Niño year. I confess I’m glad it’s over for the year. I fell down rabbit hole after rabbit hole trying to identify birds I saw at the river. Maybe I’ll participate again when I’m retired or at least wait until I’ve learned a lot more about identifying birds.
How about you? Are you a birder? Do you go on field trips just to find birds? Do you have a favorite bird? If I had to pick a favorite right this moment, it would be the White-Tailed Kite. But tomorrow, I might give you a different answer.