Saturday, June 05, 2010

I can't hear you!

These guys moved into a house right behind us - noisy but cute, we have put up with their flighty behavior for over a month now. We watch them from the kitchen window, while sipping afternoon tea on the deck, and they have given us a great show. They provide for each other and their new come chicks with all kinds of debris from the universe around us. Happily enough, I have actually learned their call. In spite of the fact that I came VERY close to accepting a place at UCT in Ornithology, I really can't tell the difference between very many birds. LBJ's (little blue, little brown, or little black jobbers) and then crows, pigeons, robins, woodpeckers I can distinguish visually and auditorially from other birds, but rarely from each other, red winged blackbirds, and now these fellas - black capped chickadees. There are times I wonder whether it is this pair singing to each other, or perhaps some of the jays, or robins. I really can't tell. I have sat outside listening intently for hours. I have listened online to recordings over and over. I have played with that cool book - the one you get to actually hear the birds sing and see the picture so you can put the two together - if anyone is thinking of a late birthday gift for me - or an early christmas/chanukah one! - this would be IT! I have no ability to distinguish birds by sound. At all. Chick-a-chick-a-dee-dee-dee! Ok, that one I think I've got. But if they didn't live eight inches from me, I wouldn't. Birds are WAY more complex and cool than people give them credit for - most people, anyway. Listen for the birds. They sing of the air, peace in the leaves of the trees, alarm in the grass. Listen, for the birds sing of the air.

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